Amanita strobiliformis (August 2012)
Visited one of my regular haunts, Nottingham University Campus. Usually I'm out searching for fungi very early in the mornings but on that Sunday afternoon, it was more of stroll around so I could show a friend some of the nice cultivated gardens.
En route to the first garden in a grass verge near to mixed trees, stood a quite large, but immature white fungus. Next to it was another lying on the ground, passed its best, but good enough to get a photograph of the gills. The immature one was in perfect condition. I knew it was an Amanita but being immature did not have all its characteristics. Puzzled I took a good photograph and studied my books. At a loss, decided to consult an opinion from a contact in the Notts Fungi Group. Luckily, he had seen the same fungi 2 days later than myself, had analysed the spore prints and was told it was Amanita Strobiliformis. Both parties happy, his photo had not turned out too well so I could provide my image to the Notts Fungi Group and he had managed to get a good analysis!
It would have been good to see this fungi at its maturity as it is large, white with scales that over-hang the margin. The stem is white and shaggy with remains of a volval bag, also having a large ring. The immature one I saw was certainly striking. Usually solitary late Summer to Autumn and according to the books is rare so I'm glad to have seen it.
This image can now be seen on Browse 4.