It grows in groups in places which are often unexpected, such as green areas in towns. It occurs widely in grasslands and meadows in Europe and North America. It appears to have been introduced to Australia, New Zealand and Iceland. In Australia the species is sufficiently common to have been featured on a postage stamp issued by Australia Post in 1981
Vanaf mei tot in november is de geschubde inktzwam vaak in groepen te vinden op grond die pas is omgewerkt op akkers, weilanden, parken en wegbermen. Ook in de stad is deze paddenstoel veel gezien op bemest gras.