Some common ascomycetes considered ‘flask fungi’ are in the following orders and associated families: Boliniales (Boliniaceae), Geoglossales (Geoglossaceae), Hypocreales (Bionectriaceae, Clavicipitaceae, Cordycipitaceae, Hypocreaceae, Nectriacea, Ophiocordycipitaceae, the Stachybotryacae and numerous genera not assigned to any family within the order), Pleosporales (Venturiaceae), and the Xylariales (Diatryaceae, Hypoxylaceae, and Xylariaceae).

Fungi in the order Boliniales are within the class Sordariomycetes. While the family includes seven genera and 40 species, only one genus is pictured here, Camarops petersii. It belongs to the family Bolinaceae.

The Geoglossales consists of about 10 genera of inoperculate discomycetes distinguished by their tongue-shaped apothecia supported by an infertile stalk. They have dark ascospores within asci on the topmost ‘tongue’ section of the fungi. 

The Hypocreales are an order consisting of seven families, 237 genera, and 2647 species. Species of Hypocreales typically have brightly colored spore-producing structures, which are often yellow, orange or red. Three of the seven families are illustrated here: Cordyceptaceae, Hypocreaceae and the Ophiocordycipitaceae. 

The Pleosporales is estimated to contain 23 families, 332 genera and more than 4700 species. The majority of species are saprobes on decaying plant material in fresh water, marine, or terrestrial environments, but several species are also associated with living plants as parasites, epiphytes or endophytes. Epiphytes are non-parasitic plants that grow on trees or other plants, like orchids and bromeliads in tropical environments. Temperate zone epiphytes include a variety of lichens, liverworts, mosses and ferns. Endophytes are fungi (or bacteria) that live within host plants. Many appear to enable plants to survive stress caused by drought, insects and grazing herbivores. Only one example is depicted here, Apiosorina morbosa, which tends to infect cherry trees. Click on the image below to see enlarged photos of  this member of the Venturiaceae family.

Species in the Xylariales order are primarily inhabitants of wood. Some occur as well on seeds, dung, fruits, leaf litter and soil or are associated with insects. While cosmopolitan, they are especially found associated with tropical plants, where many exist as endophytes. Two families are represented below - Diatrypaceae and Xylariaceae. Click on the images below to see an enlarged photos of fungi in the Diatrypaceae and the Xylariaceae families.