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Thursday, 10 October 2019

Galerina marginata - Funeral Cap/Funeral Bell

Galerina marginata - Funeral Cap/Funeral Bell

As the common name indicates this mushroom is very poisonous.  It contains the same toxins as the Amanita phalloides Death Cap mushroom.  Also, it can easily be mistaken for Kuehneromyces mutabilis.

It is not rare but not so common either.  To be found on stumps and logs of broad-leaf trees.  I discovered a little group on the Clifton side of the River Trent, Nottinghamshire.  The striking feature for me is the striate and significant ring for such a delicate looking mushroom.

Characteristics: cap yellowish/tan up to 6.5 cm across.  Gelatinous, slight umbo, smooth textured. Drying more yellowish.  Gills concolorous with the cap, crowded.  Stem also concolorous with the cap but darker tan below the ring.  The stem being slender and equal and fibrous.  The ring is superior, prominent, brown, striate/fibrous.
The odour is faint, mealy.  

Showing underside and the distinctive ring

Showing the cap


It looks an innocent little mushroom, but clearly looks can be deceptive.
Thank you to Howard Williams for helping me to identify this mushroom.


Wednesday, 18 September 2019

Oudemansiella mucida - Porcelain Fungus

Oudemansiella mucida - Porcelain Fungus

I have to give credit to my son for finding this beautiful little fungus.  Whilst I was busy photographing a Russula he had spotted some huge brackets and then saw the Porcelain Fungus growing in profusion on a large dead beech tree.


Having always admired the delicate beauty of this fungus in books, it was just great to see it first-hand.  We spent a long time taking photos of this discovery at various stages from very young to mature.  Both of us captivated by it.  It is like pure white porcelain that has morphed into a fungus! And just begs to be photographed.

Characteristics:

Cap up to 8 cm across, when young grey, slowly turning white. Semi-translucent, slimy.  Looks shiny. Gills distant, pure white. Stem also white, striate above the ring which is membrane like and delicate. To be found on dead beech in clusters; sometimes large. Later Summer to Autumn.  Common.

Showing top of the cap




Showing distant gills and membrane ring
Showing a cluster with young examples

Showing cap and stem






Friday, 6 September 2019

Polyporus loptocephalus - Blackfoot Polypore

Polyporus loptocephalus - Blackfoot Polypore

Only my second sighting of this little Polypore.  The first being on a golf course in Angus Scotland several years ago.  This time it was on my own patch in Derbyshire, England!  It was growing in isolation on a broken twig lying on the ground amongst leaf litter.  The specimen in Scotland was as its maximum size which is 10 cm across.  This tiny little one was about 2 cm across but perfectly formed.  The black marking towards the base of the stem being a perfect example of why it gets its name.

Characteristics:

Cap 1-10 cm across, funnel-shaped with an irregular margin edge.  Indented at the point where the stem attaches.  Oche-brown becoming tan with age.  Finely lined.  Pores white later becoming brown. Stem approx up to 5 cm, narrow with blackening at the base.

Showing cap

Showing the black marking at the base of the stem 'Blackfoot'

Close-up of cap







Monday, 12 August 2019

Enteridium lycoperdon

Enteridium lycoperdon

Enteridium lycoperdon is a member of the Myxomycetes most usually referred to as Slime Moulds.  
The majority of these are very tiny but a few can be seen with the naked eye.  A very primative fungus and a subject in itself.

Wandering around my allotment earlier this year I came across Enteridium lycoperdon.  It was larger than previous ones I'd seen, and a week or so later it had burst releasing a mass of brown spores.  Having never seen the spores burst out I thought I'd share the photographs in this post.

Characteristics: medium to large sized whitish cushion.  Can feel rubbery and soft.
At maturity it breaks down to expose reddish brown spores.  Usually to be found on dead trees but usually the tree is still in the ground.  Can be seen throughout the year but mostly in the Spring.



Cushion-like fruit body

Reddish brown spores exposed


Monday, 8 July 2019

Peziza cerea - Cellar Cup

Peziza cerea - Cellar Cup

I received an email from a friend who notified me that he'd found a fungus growing in his garage.  Off I went later that day to take a look. It's not every day that I go to investigate a fungus growing inside a building.

Cellar Cup is often to be found on rotting sandbags, sacking, damp mortar and soil between damp paving stones.  Fundamentally this fungus likes damp and moist conditions.  I came across Cellar Cup a long time ago - that example was growing on discarded sacking.  The example included in this post was covered in cobwebs but in prime condition.

Characteristics:  Cup 1-5 cm across, cup-shaped, yellowish - buff with a paler inner surface.  The outer surface is similar but can be darker with a scurfy texture that darkens towards the base.
This is an occasional fungus.

Below are some photographs.

Perspective showing the size 
Showing young


Monday, 1 July 2019

Psathyrella ammophila - Dune Brittlestem

Psathyrella ammophila - Dune Brittlestem

Within 24 hours of arriving at Arbroath on the East coast of Scotland my friend took me to Carnoustie beach. A small sand and rock beach with some sand dunes remaining.  Some of the dunes have vanished over the years as sea defences have had to be built.

It's a real treat for me to visit the coastline and am always on the lookout for mushrooms that grow in such a habitat.  On the walk back to the car park I stumbled across a handful of Dune Brittlestem.  I find it amazing that fungus can survive in such a hostile environment surrounded by marram grass.  Anyway it made my day as they were at their prime and the photographs are below.

Characteristics:

Cap up to 3 cm across.  Clay coloured, slowly turning darker brown with ultra fine hairs that are only visible with a magnifying glass.  Gills initially pale then dark brown and finally black.  Quite broad and close.  Stem pallid brown, smooth, virtually equal, slender and slightly rooting.  No ring.  Can be hollow.  To be found in local dunes between May and September.



Showing the pale cap in the marram grass

Showing the crowded gills

Showing the pale stem and the slight 'root'

Showing the perspective group in the dunes




Tuesday, 11 June 2019

Agrocybe rivulosa - Wrinkled Field Cap Mushroom

Agrocybe rivulosa - Wrinkled Field Cap Mushroom

I found this lovely specimen at University Park, Nottingham where over the years have found many interesting and unusual mushrooms.  Behind the Boat House was a huge pile of bark chippings.  I always tend to investigate such 'piles' whether it be dung or chippings and there found a mushroom with a wrinkled cap. I'd not seen one quite like this.

On returning home I spent several hours searching for it in my various books and it did not feature.  After much searching on the internet I thought it might be Agrocybe rivulosa.  I sent some of my photographs to my friend Howard retired Recorder for Nottinghamshire Fungi Group and he confirmed it to be the case.

Thanks to M for driving me to the University Park in the rain so that I could get some more photographs.

Here is some background to this mushroom.

The first recorded sighting of this mushroom was in 2003 by a 
Dutch mycologist Marijke M. Nauta (source Wikipedia).  The first recording in the UK was in 2004.  It has since become quite common in Southern England due to the process of mulching flowerbeds which has caused its spreading. It is common in Holland, and mainland Europe. 

Also been recorded occasionally in Wales and Scotland.  Rivulosa refers to the wrinkled grooves like rivulets in the cap. Source First Nature.

Characteristics:

The cap can reach a diameter of up to 10 cm.  The colour of the cap can vary from clay/yellow to pale orange-brown.  The gills are cream initially then turning grey.  The stem is fibrous and hollow, white turning pale ochre/grey with a large pendulous ring.  Chemical smell.  To been seen June - October on mulch and bark chippings.


Showing the wrinkled grooves in the cap.

Showing large pendulous ring.


Showing fibrous stem and base.

N.B. please note on the day the photographs were taken this mushroom was covered in small black insects.