I love Mushrooms! Can you help me ID some please?

christinmk z5b eastern WAAugust 30, 2008

Hello! I suppose im a true PNW girl. I love lichens, moss, and especially ferns. Recently ive also come to love mushrooms. I used to always whack them down if I saw them growing in my yard, but now im secretly delighted when I see one. Is that weird?

I was wondering if you guys could help me ID a few. Dont worry I dont go around eating unknown shrooms, lol! I just like the way they look.

The first is really interesting. I noticed this in the early spring in an area in which I had just layed down a bit of compost (from my own composter). I had two of them actually. It has craters in the dark brown top. It lasted a few days before the top blew off and the hollow stems were left by themselves.

Second pic is of a cluster also from spring. Cute arn't they? They popped up around an old stump.

A year or so ago I had some neat reddish-brown mushrooms growing around the stump you see in above pic. They were leathery and had a flat top. Interestingly enough they grew in the VERY early spring when it was still quite cool out. Know what they are?

And right now I have some absolutly AMAZING ones growing on a large old stump in another part of my yard. I first noticed a white mass on the top of it. I thought some critter might have upchucked on it but I looked closer and it was some sort of fungus. A few days later I noticed some of this hard white stuff oozing out from the cracks of the stump too. This mass has now 'bloomed'. There are brown crecent scales emerging with white edges. Im thrilled! Do you know what it could be? Sorry no pics yet.

Thank you!


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dirtmonkey(z8 OR)

The first looks like a morel, maybe the "half-free morel". I don't think it's a Gyromitra. If you can confirm that it's a morel with a local person in the know, you may have some tasty treats growing there! The second is Coprinus, one of the "inky caps", named for the way the caps deliquesce into black goo.

Hard to tell about the stump, but it may be either some kind of oyster mushroom (Pleurotus or relatives), or one of the shelf/bracket polypores like "turkey tail"

Hope that helps,

    Bookmark   September 3, 2008 at 12:38AM
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christinmk z5b eastern WA

Thank you Vincent! Youve been a big help.
I gave false info on that first mushroom. The pic of it on my camera was much brigher than it loaded on the computer. That first mushroom DOES NOT have craters. It has RIDGES. The protruding ridges have black on the ends. I did some research on it and im really not sure if its a Morchella elata or a Verpa (false morel).
You are right about the second being an 'Inky Cap'. I looked it up and I think its a Coprinus micaceus.
The scaly stump grower- I believe it is a Turkey Tail, Trametes versicolor. It is SO awesome!
Thanks again!

    Bookmark   September 3, 2008 at 12:47PM
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mxbarbie(pnw BC 5)

First picture is not a Verpa. Verpa stems connect to the cap inside at the very top of the stem. Morel caps are attached to the stem at the base of the cap and the whole musroom is hollow (ie: if you picked it at ground level and looked inside the stem and the cap are hollow, you could put it on your finger like the finger of a glove.) There are other false morels like 'brain mushrooms' that look similar but usually have a more rounded bulbous cap.
Good book for you would be David Arora's 'all that the rain promises, and more'.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 12:15AM
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You have two excellent mycological societies (mushroom clubs) near you if you are in Western Washington, Snohomish County Mycological Society and Seattle Myc. Society.
The first picture is definitely a morel, I'd have to drag my book out to tell you which species.

These clubs are having their fall shows any time now. Check their websites and go if you can.


    Bookmark   October 7, 2008 at 7:17PM
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