Tuber melanosporum


Monographia Tuberacearum 48, Tab. II fig. X, Tab. V fig. III (1831)
Tuber nitidum

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Tuber requienii Tul. et C. Tul. var. stramineum Ferry & Quél (1888), C.R. Ass. franc. Av. Sci. 16(2):590

Tuber rufum Pico subsp. nitidum (Vit.) E. Fisher (1897), Ascomyceten: Tuberaceen und Hemiasceen 59

Tuber malacodermum E. Fischer (1923), Verh. Naturf. Ges. Basel 35(1): 49, f. 9

Tuber vacini Velenovský (1947) Opera Botanica Cechica 4:96, Tab. I, f. 27

Tuber rufum Pico forma nitidum (Vit.) Montecchi & Lazzari (1993), Atlante Fotografico di Funghi Ipogei (Trento): 197 (1993)

Tuber candidum Harkn., Proc. Calif. Acad. Sci., Ser. 3, Bot. 1: 274 (1899)

Macroscopic characters:

Ascomata: hypogeous, subglobose or irregular in form, often with a basal cavity very tight, groove-shaped, 1-3,5 cm in size, brown ochre, smooth to subpapillose, something pruinose

Gleba: hard, solid, whitish at first, then light brown, darker at maturity, marbled with two kinds of numerous, thin, branching veins: the one kind dark-coloured and contain no air (venae lymphaticae, veines aquiferes of Tulasne, venae internae of Vittadini), the other white and conveying air (air-veins, veines aeriferes, venae externae).

Odour: strong, tuber-like, sometimes garlicky. Easily detectable by truffle dogs, the truffle beetle (Leiodes cinnamomea) and truffle flies (Suillia spp.)

Taste: faint, little persistent, nutty


Widespread species associated with deciduous trees and conifers, ripening in late spring, although you can find them year-round. We harvest them under holm oaks, in calcareous soils, in sunnier and drier places than Tuber rufum, often sharing habitat with Tuber aestivum and Tuber panniferum.


Tuber nitidum is not accepted by all authors, who see it as a variety or form of Tuber rufum. Although Tuber nitidum has a smooth peridium unlike the warted and areolate peridium of Tuber rufum, there is no microscopic difference between the two species.


Tuber nitidum spores

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Microscopic characters:

Asci: subglobose to broadly clavate or pyriform, long or short-stalked, 50-85 x 45-65 µm, excluding stalk, 1-4 (-5)-spored

Ascospores: 20-30 (37) x 16-22 (26) µm, excluding ornament, size variable depending on number of spores in the ascus, Q range = 1,15-1,40, broadly ellipsoid to ovate ellipsoid, yellow ochre, translucent, ornamented with conic spines, separate, 2-3 µm long.

Peridium: 300-400 µm thick, composed of agglutinated, interwoven hyphae.


Antonio RodríguezAntonio Rodríguez
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