Mushroom Forage

Jonathan Kranz, a member of Boston Mycological Club, led our walk through Great Hill, including newly protected land at 4 Piper Lane. Jonathan has been foraging for several seasons, and just started leading walks in the past year, teaching people how to observe and learn about fascinating funghi.

Jonathan was very knowledgeable and enthusiastic. Instead of “merely” identifying the mushrooms the group found, he pointed out many identifying features which would help classify an unknown specimen. Gill spacing, branching, attachment method to stem, color, texture, what they were growing on, where they were growing, smell, even taste. NOTE: he tasted and spit a very small section of mushroom. 

Our group of 29 (including 3 children) was also very engaged, venturing off trail and returning with specimens. After 1.5 hours foraging (this went fast!), we returned to a table set up near the parking lot to talk about and identify some of our finds. 

Update: Here’s a follow up on some mushrooms that couldn’t be ID’d at the table:

  • That yellow Amanita? I think it’s Amanita flavaconia BUT the yellow gills and the season (they usually appear in the first half of summer) make me suspect it’s part of an A. flavaconia group that needs to be sorted out with DNA analysis. Possible images below.
  • Remember that TINY mushroom with the intensely yellow gills and with red “floc” on the cap? I think that was a really immature Tricholomposis rutilans, a striking mushroom.
  • I suspect the pure white mushrooms with the distant gills and waxy feel were Humidicutis pura.
  • Remember the cluster of small, white mushrooms with brown centers (and frayed edges) that we found on a decaying log? That would probably be Mycena galericulata. Possible images below.
  • That solid white mushroom with an off-center stipe growing on a downed log: I don’t know, but it MIGHT be Ossicaulis lignatilis. Possible images below.
  • That violet-capped mushroom with rusty spores? Definitely a Cortinarius, but which one? I’m not sure. I’m leaning toward C. alboviolaceus or one of the other violet-colored species. Possible images below.
  • Those orange “shelf” mushrooms that looked like oyster mushrooms? They’re the “mock oyster,” the Phyllotopsis nidulans. Definitely NOT EDIBLE.

Last but not least, this was a perfectly beautiful fall day with close to peak autumn color! Check out the photos and video below

The group receives a few instructions before setting out to forage
Jonathan Kranz of BMC helps ID our finds
Giant puffball or “wolf fart” mushroom

Participant Gallery

Funghi Gallery: All errors in ID are the fault of the writer, although I tried to incorporate the ID updates listed above.