Cryptoporus volvatus

(With secret pores, Contains a volva)

Pouch fungus, Cryptic globe fungus, veiled polypore


Between the pore surface and the outer tissue, spores fall into a cavity where they are trapped. With no exposure to the outside world, the spore dispersal is quite different than usual among the polypores. Since the wind cannot take the spores away into the wilds of the forest, it has some beetle allies that help it to spread the ‘seed’ along. When the spores are released, a small space appears in the outer tissue as well as a resinous odor that attracts hungry wood-boring beetles, who are then warmly welcomed inside the mushroom. They go in to this new home made of food and they consume the mushroom’s tubes and so the spores as well. The beetles then carry these spores away with them and bore into a new tree whilst inoculating it with the C. volvatus spores.


Deadwood of conifers, found growing in small groups, but dispersed. Favors trees that have recently fallen, been burned…generally in a state of decay. Said to be found summer and fall, though it is common year round in the Pacific West.

Active Known Constituents

  • B-Glucans,
  • Triterpenes
  • sesquiterpenes
  • Volatile oils
  • Amino acids
  • Cryptoporic acids

Spore Print- Pinkish

Therapeutic Actions

Anti-tumor, Anti-allergy, Anti-viral, Anti-inflammatory, Immunomodulatory

Medicinal Use

  • Documented in the Materia Medica of Yunnan, the fruiting body has been used for asthma and bronchitis dating back to the 15th century AD
  • When given at dose of 5mg/ml, the H1N1 virus was blocked by the aqueous extract. Compared to the control group, there was only 20% virus entry into cells.
  • The aqueous extract also exhibits antiviral activity against Influenza A virus in vitro and in vivo.
  • It has been shown to inhibit both early and late stages in virus replication1
  • Studies have showed strong antioxidant, free radical scavenging activity2
  • Cytotoxic activity was observed against human cervix epithelia carcinoma cell lines (Hela) and human hepatoma cell lines. 3
  • Some traditional uses of this mushroom include use in tracheitis, asthma, hemorrhoids, anti-decrepitude, toothache, and anti-inflammatory 3
  • The polysaccharides in the H20 extract from the fruiting body significantly alleviated symptoms of allergic rhinitis and asthma. 4
  • For soar throat, place five to eight pieces, that have been previously simmered in water, in the mouth without chewing.
  • Cryptoporus polysaccharide treatment down regulates LPS-mediated inflammation in lung epithelial cells. This can be a helpful anti-inflammatory for the treatment of airway inflammatory diseases. 6


Transforms phlegm and stops coughing

  • used in TCM to stop bleeding in the intestines, to treat hemorrhoids, carbuncles, furuncles, and toothache. Traditionally decocted as an anti-inflammatory for asthma and bronchial conditions.

Preparation of Dual Extract

See Fomitopsis pinicola preparation

Works Cited

  1.  Gao L, Sun Y, Si J, Liu J, Sun G, et al. (2014) Cryptoporus volvatusExtract Inhibits Influenza Virus Replication In Vitroand In Vivo. PLoS ONE 9(12)
  2. Lee, Jaejung, Joo-Hyun Hong, Jeong-Do Kim, Byoung Jun Ahn, Beom Seok Kim, Gyu-Hyeok Kim, and Jae-Jin Kim. “The Antioxidant Properties of Solid-culture Extracts of Basidiomycetous Fungi.” J. Gen. Appl. Microbiol. The Journal of General and Applied Microbiology59.4 (2013): 279-85. Web.
  3. G. Ren, X.Y. Liu, H.K. Zhu, S.Z. Yang, C.X. Fu, Evaluation of cytotoxic activities of some medicinal polypore fungi from China, Fitoterapia, Volume 77, Issue 5, July 2006, Pages 408-410, ISSN 0367-326X
  4. Qiang-Min Xie, Jun-Fang Deng, Yang-Mei Deng, Chuan-Sen Shao, Hui Zhang, Chuan-Kui Ke, Effects of cryptoporus polysaccharide on rat allergic rhinitis associated with inhibiting eotaxin mRNA expression, Journal of Ethnopharmacology, Volume 107, Issue 3, 11 October 2006, Pages 424-430
  5.  Rogers, Robert Dale. The Fungal Pharmacy: The Complete Guide to Medicinal Mushrooms and   Lichens of North America. Berkeley, CA: North Atlantic, 2011. Print.Fungal Pharm.
  6. Zhu, Jian-Ping, Kai Wu, Jin-You Li, Yan Guan, Yan-Hong Sun, Wen-Jiang Ma, and Qiang-Min Xie. “Cryptoporus Volvatus Polysaccharides Attenuate LPS-induced Expression of Pro-inflammatory Factors via the TLR2 Signaling Pathway in Human Alveolar Epithelial Cells.” Pharmaceutical Biology(2015): 1-7. Web.




7 thoughts on “Cryptoporus volvatus

  1. Hello! Your website is amazing.

    I have recently discovered this mushroom and now I am finding it everywhere! I was wondering a few things about making an extract with it. First would be if it’s okay or best to pick them when they look like they do in your picture? When they are young and before they open up. Also, in Canada the highest percent alcohol I can get is 75%. Would you adjust either the amount or waiting time using a lower alcohol?

    Thanks so much!


    1. Hi Amanda! Thank you. Yes, I think it’s bested to collect before the little beetles have gotten in there. 75% alcohol is fine. I would chop them up and macerate them in the alcohol fresh. An a notable constituent, cryptoporic acid, is a sesquiterpene and will volatilize if boiled first. Do the triple extraction process. 1. Alcohol first for 24 hours. 2. Press out mushroom from alcohol. Simmer mushroom in water for 2-3 hours. 3. Strain out mushroom from water. 4. Reduce water extraction down (simmer it a bit to concentrate) 5. Mix mushroom, water extract, initial ETOH extract. Let macerate for 2 weeks. Make sure there is at least 25% alcohol in this process so it doesn’t mold. 6. After 2 weeks, press out and enjoy.


  2. I just found this mushroom yesterday on a walk in my southern forest. I noticed it on that tree about 7 years ago as well but that one was like 20 feet up in the air and I couldn’t see it well. Yesterday I found half a dozen of these within the first ten feet of the tree, there are more higher but I can’t see them well. The tree has been dead for at least 7 years now so I am surprised that these are still growing on it.

    I have no other trees with any of this mushroom growing on it so I was hoping to spread it to some of the other spruces in my forest that having troubles. From everything that I have read they grow “conifers” in general so I assume this means they do alright on my white firs, red firs and tamaracks as well. I have my doubts about the pines as no mushroom seems to be able grow on my pines.

    After having done several hours of research I can find almost no information on the growing needs of these mushrooms. I assume that we have a good growing climate here or they wouldn’t be here, so clearly a very cold climate works for them, but if I wanted to grow them in the house any ideas what to shoot for in temps and humidity level. I grow other mushrooms in a mushroom grow room so I have temperature and humidity control, but I don’t want to set to very cold conditions just for this one little mushroom.

    Any idea where a person might potentially find a source of information on how to grow these? I think I can propagate them through my forests easily enough but I would also really like to add this to my mushroom grow operation.


    1. Hi Ed, unfortunately I have never found information about how to grow these mushrooms, I have always found them in abundance in Lake Tahoe and some in Washington. Good luck on your search. Please let me know if you figure out how to cultivate them.


  3. Greetings. Thanks for a great post on this mushroom. Could you point me towards the source you used for the TCM properties? Also, do you happen to know the pinyin name of the herb?


    1. Hi Peter – This information comes from Christopher Hobbs in his book, Medicinal Mushrooms – an exploration of tradition healing culture. I haven’t been able to find the original source that he cites in his book. I do not know the pinyin name.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s