Cryptothecia is a genus of white to greenish crustose lichens that grow on bark, wood, or leaves. in tropical or subtropical areas worldwide.[2] It has a conspicuous prothallus that develops around its periphery which can be bright red in some species, hence the common name wreath lichen.[3] The main vegetative body (thallus) lacks a cortex (ecorticate and is often immersed in the substrate or byssoid (whispy, like teased wool).[2] The medulla is white, well defined, and often peppered with calcium oxalate crystals.[2] Ascomata are not well defined, being cushions of soft white mycelium immersed in the medullary tissue, hence the name from the Greek krypto = "to conceal" and theke = "a container or sheath".[2] There are about 45 described species in the genus according to one source,[2] and 75 species according to another.[4] The genus is in the family Arthoniaceae.[5] It contains Trentepohlia, a green alga, as its photobiont partner.

Cryptothecia sp. growing on a tree in Chaco Province, northern Argentina
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Fungi
Division: Ascomycota
Class: Arthoniomycetes
Order: Arthoniales
Family: Arthoniaceae
Genus: Cryptothecia
Stirt. (1876)
Type species
Cryptothecia subnidulans
Stirt. (1876)

See text


Two species have been described in North America.[3] At least one species, Cryptothecia rubrocincta, has been used in Brazil as a source of dye.[6]



  1. ^ "Synonymy: Cryptothecia Stirt., Proc. Roy. phil. Soc. Glasgow 10: 164 (1876) [1877]". Species Fungorum. Retrieved 19 February 2022.
  2. ^ a b c d e CRYPTOTHECIA, Flora of Australia volume 57, John A. Elix, 2009
  3. ^ a b Brodo, I. M., S. D. Sharnoff, and S. Sharnoff. 2001. Lichens of North America. Yale University Press: New Haven.
  4. ^ Kirk MP, Cannon PF, Minter DW, Stalpers JA (2008). Dictionary of the Fungi (10th ed.). Wallingford, UK: CAB International. p. 181. ISBN 0-85199-826-7.
  5. ^ Lumbsch TH, Huhndorf SM (December 2007). "Outline of Ascomycota – 2007". Myconet. Chicago, USA: The Field Museum, Department of Botany. 13: 1–58. Archived from the original on 2009-03-18.
  6. ^ Mors, WB. 1966. Useful Plants of Brazil. Holden-Day, Inc., San Francisco. Page 57.
  7. ^ a b c d e Ram, T.A.M. Jagadeesh; Sinha, G.P.; Singh, K.P. (2009). "New species and new records of Cryptothecia and Herpothallon (Arthoniales) from India". The Lichenologist. 41 (6): 605–613. doi:10.1017/s0024282909008123.
  8. ^ a b c d Ram, T.A.M. Jagadeesh; Sinha, G.P. (2016). "A world key to Cryptothecia and Myriostigma (Arthoniaceae), with new species and new records from the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, India". Phytotaxa. 266 (2): 103–114. doi:10.11646/phytotaxa.266.2.4.
  9. ^ a b Wolseley, P.A.; Aptroot, A. (2009). "The lichen genera Cryptothecia and Stirtonia in northern Thailand". Bibliotheca Lichenologica. 99: 411–422.
  10. ^ a b c d e Thor, G. (1997). "The genus Cryptothecia in Australia and New Zealand and the circumscription of the genus". Symbolae Botanicae Upsalienses. 32 (1): 267–289.
  11. ^ Woo, Jung-Jae; Lőkös, László; Farkas, Edit; Park, Chan-Ho; Hur, Jae-Seoun (2017). "Cryptothecia austrocoreana (Arthoniales, Arthoniaceae), a new species from South Korea". Mycobiology. 45 (4): 338–343. doi:10.5941/myco.2017.45.4.338.
  12. ^ a b c Seavey, F.; Seavey, J.; Gagnon, J.; Guccion, J.; Kaminsky, B.; Pearson, J.; Podaril, A.; Randall, B. (2017). "The lichens of Dagny Johnson Key Largo Hammock Botanical State Park, Key Largo, Florida, USA". Bulletin Florida Museum of Natural History. 53 (5): 201–268.
  13. ^ Herrera-Campos, María de los Ángeles; Barcenas-Peña, Alejandrina; Miranda-González, Ricardo; Mejía, Maricarmen Altamirano; González, Joshua A. Bautista; Colín, Paola Martínez; Téllez, Norberto Sánchez; Lücking, Robert (2019). "New lichenized Arthoniales and Ostropales from Mexican seasonally dry tropical forest". The Bryologist. 122 (1): 62–83. doi:10.1639/0007-2745-122.1.062.
  14. ^ a b Bungartz, Frank; Dután-Patiño, Valeria Leonor; Elix, John A. (2013). "The lichen genera Cryptothecia, Herpothallon and Helminthocarpon (Arthoniales) in the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador". The Lichenologist. 45 (6): 739–762. doi:10.1017/s0024282913000522.
  15. ^ Aptroot, André; Souza, Maria Fernanda (2021). "New crustose lichens from a tropical coastal area in Paraná (Brazil)". Cryptogamie, Mycologie. 42 (12): 191–197. doi:10.5252/cryptogamie-mycologie2021v42a12.
  16. ^ Seavey, F. (2009). "Cryptothecia evergladensis sp. nov. (Arthoniaceae), a new lichen species from Everglades National Park, Florida". Opuscula Philolichenum. 7: 49–54.
  17. ^ a b Lima, Edvaneide Leandro de; Mendonça, Cléverton de Oliveira; Aptroot, André; Cáceres, Marcela Eugenia da Silva (2013). "Two new species of Cryptothecia from NE Brazil". The Lichenologist. 45 (3): 361–365. doi:10.1017/s0024282912000862.
  18. ^ Seavey, Frederick; Seavey, Jean (2014). "Four new species and sixteen new lichen records for North America from Everglades National Park". The Bryologist. 117 (4): 395–404. doi:10.1639/0007-2745-117.4.395.
  19. ^ Aptroot, André; Feuerstein, Shirley Cunha; Cunha-Dias, Iane Paula Rego; de Lucena Nunes, Álvaro Rogerio; Honorato, Maykon Evangelista; da Silva Cáceres, Marcela Eugenia (2017). "New lichen species and lichen reports from Amazon forest remnants and Cerrado vegetation in the Tocantina Region, northern Brazil". The Bryologist. 120 (3): 320–328. doi:10.1639/0007-2745-120.3.320.
  20. ^ Menezes, Aline Anjos; de Lima, Edvaneide Leandro; Xavier-Leite, Amanda Barreto; Maia, Leonor Costa; Aptroot, André; Cáceres, Marcela Eugenia da Silva (2013). "New species of Arthoniales from NE Brazil". The Lichenologist. 45 (5): 611–617. doi:10.1017/s0024282913000236.
  21. ^ Aptroot, A.; Spier, J.L. (2010). "The lichen genus Cryptothecia (Arthoniaceae) in Java" (PDF). Australasian Lichenology. 66: 50–57.
  22. ^ Das, Kanad; Rossi, Walter; Leonardi, Marco; Ghosh, Aniket; Bera, Ishika; Hembrom, Manoj E.; Bajpai, Rajesh; Joseph, Siljo; Nayaka, Sanjeeva; Upreti, Dalip Kumar; Wang, Xiang-hua; Hofstetter, Valérie; Buyck, Bart (2018). "Fungal Biodiversity Profiles 61 – 70". Cryptogamie, Mycologie. 39 (4): 381–418. doi:10.7872/crym/v39.iss4.2018.381.
  23. ^ Sparrius, Laurens B.; Saipunkaew, Wanaruk (2005). "Cryptothecia punctosorediata, a new species from Northern Thailand". The Lichenologist. 37 (6): 507–509. doi:10.1017/s0024282905015495. S2CID 86254922.
  24. ^ da Silva Cáceres, Marcela Eugenia; Aptroot, André (2016). "First inventory of lichens from the Brazilian Amazon in Amapá State". The Bryologist. 119 (3): 250–265. doi:10.1639/0007-2745-119.3.250.
  25. ^ Ertz, Damien; Flakus, Adam; Oset, Magdalena; Sipman, Harrie J.M.; Kukwa, Martin (2015). "A first assessment of lichenized Arthoniales in Bolivia with descriptions of two new species". Phytotaxa. 217 (1): 1–25. doi:10.11646/phytotaxa.217.1.1.
  26. ^ Neuwirth, G.; Aptroot, A. (2016). "Cryptothecia stockeri (Arthoniales, Arthoniaceae), a new corticolous lichen species from the Seychelles". Herzogia. 29 (1): 97–102.
  27. ^ Stirton, J. (1877). "Descriptions of recently discovered lichens". Proceedings of the Philosophical Society of Glasgow. 10: 156–164.

Further readingEdit

  • U.Makhija & P.G.Patwardhan, A contribution towards a monograph of the lichen genus Cryptothecia (family Arthoniaceae), Current Res. Pl. Sci. 1994: 57–72 (1994)
  • R.Lücking, G.Thor, A.Aptroot, K.Kalb & J.A.Elix, The Cryptothecia candida complex revisited, Lichenologist 38: 235–240 (2006).