Boletus reticulatus (formerly known as Boletus aestivalis (Paulet) Fr.), and commonly referred to as the summer cep is a basidiomycete fungus of the genus Boletus. It occurs in deciduous forests of Europe where it forms a symbiotic mycorrhizal relationship with species of oak (Quercus). The fungus produces fruiting bodies in the summer months which are edible and popularly collected. The summer cep was formally described by Jacob Christian Schäffer as Boletus reticulatus in 1774, which took precedence over B. aestivalis as described by Jean-Jacques Paulet in 1793.


German naturalist Jacob Christian Schäffer described the summer cep as Boletus reticulatus in 1774. Jean-Jacques Paulet described it as Boletus aestivalis in 1793, the species name derived from the Latin aestas "summer". The two names were used in literature for many years.

Boletus reticulatus is classified in Boletus section Boletus, alongside close relatives such as B. aereus, B. edulis, and B. pinophilus. A genetic study of the four European species found that B. reticulatus was sister to B. aereus.[1] More extensive testing of worldwide taxa revealed that B. reticulatus was most closely related to two lineages that had been classified as B. edulis from southern China and Korea/northern China respectively. The common ancestor of these three species was related to a lineage consisting of B. aereus and the genetically close B. mamorensis.[2] Molecular analysis suggests that the B. aereus/mamorensis and B. reticulatus/Chinese B. "edulis" lineages diverged around 6 to 7 million years ago.[3]


The summer cep's fruiting body is a mushroom with a swollen bulbous stem, and large convex cap. The cap is more or less round and usually up to 20(40) centimetres in diameter. It bears a velvety brown, rust to chocolate cuticle which when dry often cracks to reveal the white flesh underneath, giving the appearance of a net.

The darker, more uniform shade and the velvety feel of the cap are a key feature distinguishing this species as is the vagueness or total absence of a white edge to the cap margin as seen in Boletus edulis. The tubes and pores of the hymenium are initially white, darkening with age to pale yellow and finally brown. The stipe is central (up to 16(30) cm in height) and has a strongly marked reticulated pattern with a variable white to brown colour.

The flesh is white and thick and remains firm if yellowish as the mushroom ages, and is often attacked by insect larvae. Its odour is pleasant.

Distribution and habitat

The summer cep is found in woods throughout Europe, after hot and humid weather, from the start of summer until the end of autumn. It is particularly common in the south and west of France. It is less host-specific than other porcini mushrooms.[3]

Boletus reticulatus has been recovered from southern Africa, where it was likely introduced, growing under the Mexican species Pinus patula.[3]


The summer cep, like most ceps, is edible and useful in cooking. However, its flesh is somewhat less firm than other ceps. Based on analysis of fruit bodies collected in Portugal, there are 334 kilocalories per 100 gram of bolete (as dry weight). The macronutrient composition of 100 grams of dried bolete includes 22.6 grams of protein, 55.1 grams of carbohydrates, and 2.6 grams of fat. By weight, fresh fruit bodies are about 91% water.[4]

See also


  1. ^ Beugelsdijk DCM, van der Linde S, Zuccarello GC, den Bakker HC, Draisma SGA, Noordeloos ME (2008). "A phylogenetic study of Boletus section Boletus in Europe". Persoonia. 20 (1): 1–7. doi:10.3767/003158508X283692. PMC 2865352Freely accessible. PMID 20467482.  open access publication – free to read
  2. ^ Dentinger BT, Ammirati JF, Both EE, Desjardin DE, Halling RE, Henkel TW, Moreau PA, Nagasawa E, Soytong K, Taylor AF, Watling R, Moncalvo JM, McLaughlin DJ (2010). "Molecular phylogenetics of porcini mushrooms (Boletus section Boletus)" (PDF). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 57: 1276–92. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2010.10.004. PMID 20970511. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-05-23. 
  3. ^ a b c Feng B, Xu J, Wu G, Zeng N-K, Li Y-C, Bau T, Kost GW, Yang ZL (2012). "DNA sequence snalyses reveal abundant diversity, endemism and evidence for Asian origin of the porcini mushrooms". PLoS ONE. 7 (5): e37567. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0037567. PMC 3356339Freely accessible. PMID 22629418. e37567. 
  4. ^ Heleno SA, Barros L, Sousa MJ, Martins A, Santos-Buelga C, Ferreira CFR (2011). "Targeted metabolites analysis in wild Boletus species". LWT – Food Science and Technology. 44 (6): 1343–48. doi:10.1016/j.lwt.2011.01.017. 


Some books (in French) with information about this mushroom:

  • (in French) Régis Courtecuisse, Bernard Duhem : Guide des champignons de France et d'Europe (Delachaux & Niestlé, 1994–2000).
  • (in French) Marcel Bon : Champignons de France et d'Europe occidentale (Flammarion, 2004)
  • (in French) Dr Ewaldt Gerhardt : Guide Vigot des champignons (Vigot, 1999) - ISBN 2-7114-1413-2
  • (in French) Roger Phillips : Les champignons (Solar, 1981) - ISBN 2-263-00640-0
  • (in French) Thomas Laessoe, Anna Del Conte : L'Encylopédie des champignons (Bordas, 1996) - ISBN 2-04-027177-5
  • (in French) Peter Jordan, Steven Wheeler : Larousse saveurs - Les champignons (Larousse, 1996) - ISBN 2-03-516003-0
  • (in French) G. Becker, Dr L. Giacomoni, J Nicot, S. Pautot, G. Redeuihl, G. Branchu, D. Hartog, A. Herubel, H. Marxmuller, U. Millot et C. Schaeffner : Le guide des champignons (Reader's Digest, 1982) - ISBN 2-7098-0031-4
  • (in French) Henri Romagnesi : Petit atlas des champignons (Bordas, 1970)