Beech, horse chestnut, lime, sycamore.
Ash, birch, hornbeam, maples, wild service, and other broadleaved species.
Found fruiting on surface roots and around the base of the tree most often – sometimes fruiting up to 3m and around old (lapsed) pollard heads.
Annual. Anamorphic stage in spring is a brownish-white to greyish-white, which soon develops into a grey mass with a white perimeter. Teleomorphic stage from late summer is charcoal black and crumbles when crushed – hence its common name. Grows against the wood surface – does not form brackets. Cross-sections show black zonation (pseudosclerotic plates).
Attributed to a soft rot of the wood with later-stage white rot. Considered to often enter following wounding to the stem or roots. Able to breach reaction zones on the host tree and is thus able to act pathogenically. Clustered outbreaks have been observed. May also act saprotrophically, on dysfunctional and dead areas of a living tree. When found, investigations into remaining wood strength may be required, subject to a target existing within falling distance. Attributed often to the ceramic-like failure of trees at the butt and at lapsed pollard heads. More virulent during drought.