Characterized by brown to black colonies bearing phialides directly on the vegetative filaments or on short branches. The phialides are dark, flask-shaped, and have a collar-like or flared apex. The colourless to brown 1-celled spores (conidia) are produced successively from the apex of the phialides. Some species may produce dark brown hololastic conidia along the vegetative hyphae or at the tips of short branches. Species of Exophiala are similar and are separated from those of Phialophora mainly on the basis of producing annellides rather than phialides. The differences between the two are subtle in some instances.

Phialophora species have been isolated from soil, water, dung, wood and plant debris. Holomorphs: Gaeumannomyces, Lasiosphaeria, Podospora, and others. Ref: Cole and Kendrick 1973; Ellis 1971, 1976; Schol-Schwarz 1970; Wang, 1990