Tricholoma saponaceum

Tricholoma saponaceum is one of the most confusing, variable mushrooms we have here in Alberta. Its convex cap, usually with a broad umbo, varies in colour from pale greenish yellow, light green to greyish green, greyish olive, lead grey, bluish grey, greenish grey, to greyish brown to brown The key characteristics used for identifying these fungi are their somewhat greasy appearance, pink to orange colour at the stem’s base and a soapy odour and taste.

To make things even more complicated, none of these features are consistently present in each mushroom! T saponaceum usually grows in small groups, so one must examine each specimen carefully to arrive at a tentative ID. They’re commonly found growing in coniferous and deciduous forests across Alberta. The specific epithet saponaceum is derived from the
Latin ‘of or pertaining to soap’.

This article, including the photos, are generously brought to you by Ken Dies, an AMS member. Ken is an outstanding photographer and recipient of the 2016 AMS President’s Award.

Genus: Tricholoma

Species: saponaceum

Edibility: Non-Edible

Spore Print: White

Growing Season: Fall

Growing Season: Winter

Cap: Convex

Cap: Umbonate

Veil: Absent

Gill Attachment: Adnexed

2022-06-04T11:56:03-06:00

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Guepinia helvelloides – Apricot jelly

Guepinia is a genus of fungus in the Auriculariales order. It is a monotypic genus, containing the single species Guepinia helvelloides, commonly known as the apricot jelly.

The fungus produces salmon-pink, ear-shaped, gelatinous fruit bodies that grow solitarily or in small tufted groups on soil, usually associated with buried rotting wood.

The fruit bodies are 4–10 cm (1.6–3.9 in) tall and up to 17 cm (6.7 in) wide; the stalks are not well-differentiated from the cap.

The fungus, although rubbery, is edible, and may be eaten raw with salads, pickled, or candied. It has a white spore deposit, and the oblong to ellipsoid spores measure 9–11 by 5–6 micrometers. The fungus is widely distributed in the Northern Hemisphere, and has also been collected from South America.

Sourced 9/13/2020 from Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guepinia

 

 

Genus: Guepinia

Species: helvelloides

Edibility: Edible

Spore Print: White

Growing Season: Spring

Growing Season: Fall

Growing Season: Summer

Hymenium Type: Smooth

Veil: Absent

: Fall

2021-05-20T19:31:10-06:00

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Calvatia gigantea – Giant Puffball

Calvatia gigantea, commonly known as the giant puffball, is a puffball mushroom commonly found in meadows, fields, and deciduous forests usually in late summer and autumn. It is found in temperate areas throughout the world.

All true puffballs are considered edible when  immature, but can cause digestive upset if the spores have begun to form, as indicated by the color of the flesh being not pure white (first    yellow, then brown). Immature gilled species still contained within their universal veil can be look alikes for puffballs. To distinguish puffballs from poisonous fungi, they must be cut open; edible puffballs will have a solid white interior.

Sourced 9/13/2020 from Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calvatia_gigantea

 

 

Genus: Calvatia

Species: gigantea

Edibility: Edible

Growing Season: Fall

Growing Season: Summer

: Fall

2020-09-28T12:32:29-06:00

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Gomphus clavatus

Gomphus clavatus is commonly found in the Northern Hemisphere and in North America it’s found in mountainous regions and along the west coast (during the winter). The mushroom ranges in color, with young fruiting bodies typically looking violet and progressing to tan-color as they age. It’s cap is lobed and irregular and depending on its stage of maturity, can range from broadly convex to very depressed.

Fruiting bodies can grow up to 10cm across and 5cm high. Gomphus clavatus have mycorrhizal associations with conifers and can be found growing near spruce or fir trees or on their own.

The mushroom is also known as the Pig’s Ear!

(Photo provided by Christine Costello)

Genus: Gomphus

Species: clavatus

Edibility: Edible

Growing Season: Fall

Growing Season: Winter

Cap: Convex

Cap: Depressed

Gill Attachment: Attached

Spore Print: Brown

2019-09-12T11:34:22-06:00

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Panaeolus cinctulus

This is a common fungus that is found throughout the world. It’s cap ranges from convex and campanulate to umbonate depending on its stage of maturity.

Fruiting bodies can range from 4-6cm in diameter and are typically found in grassy, well-fertilized areas.

The mushroom is known to contain some psychoactive effects

Genus: Panaeolus

Species: cinctulus

Growing Season: Spring

Growing Season: Fall

Growing Season: Summer

Cap: Convex

Gill Attachment: Free

Spore Print: Black

Hymenium Type: Gills

Veil: Absent

2019-06-14T11:04:17-06:00

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