Poisonous Mushrooms in My Yard

Common characteristics of a deadly amanita — white spore print, ring around the stalk and a cuplike volva at the base

Disclaimer:  I am NOT a mushroom expert.  Do not use my photos to positively identify any mushroom you may find.  I often make mistakes!  🙂 

There are around 600 species of mushrooms in the genus amanita.  Many of them are poisonous, some are deadly, and a few are edible.  Some of the more common ones have descriptive names like Destroying Angel and Death Cap.  Unfortunately, I have several kinds of them growing in my yard.

Young Destroying Angel with veil covering the gills that will become a ring around the stalk as the gills expand and tear free of the veil.

I almost panicked when the mushrooms started springing up because Sheba (my Australian Shepherd puppy) eats everything — grass, moss, cow poop.  To my great relief she shows absolutely no interest in mushrooms!

Since my primary interest is in edible mushrooms, I avoid eating gilled mushrooms with any of the characteristics of an amanita, including warty patches on the cap.  In fact, I

More amanitas

avoid most gilled mushrooms except for the very easily identifiable ones that have no poisonous look-alikes.

While I’m very grateful for our recent drought-breaking rains, I do wish that yummy edible mushrooms had sprung up in my yard instead of these!

Another danger sign — warty or patchy remnants of universal veil on cap

I found these at the edge of the woods bordering our property.

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4 Comments

  1. Elizabeth in NC

     /  August 25, 2012

    You are brave eating mushrooms…I would never trust myself not to make a mistake!! Good thing the dog is not interested at all!!

    • The cliche is, “There are old mushroom hunters and there are bold mushroom hunters. But there are no old bold mushroom hunters.” 🙂

      Yes, I am immensely grateful that the dogs show no interest in them. They will even refuse bites of any food that contains cooked safe mushrooms from the store!

  2. I know nothing about wild mushrooms so I just leave them alone, but I have noticed when they pop up in our yard, the dogs leave them alone. Normally, they devour everything! What an interesting post, I love it and thank you for sharing! Do you mind me asking how you added the blogs you read on the right? I’ve been trying to figure out how to do that on mine. I finally just made a page and added my favorite blogs to it, including yours! I’m flattered to see The Camping Post on your list, thank you so much!

    • Happy to add your blog. Your photography makes me feel like I am right there enjoying your camping adventures with you!

      You use your blog’s widgets to add the RSS feeds. Make sure you use the one for other blogs, not the one for your own post content. Here’s a link showing which URLs to use in the widget’s pop-up forms. http://codex.wordpress.org/WordPress_Feeds

      If you have any questions or problems making it work, go to the WordPress support forums and ask your questions. They will take a look at your site to see what the problem might be, then will post their answer in the forums.

      Thanks for including me in your favorite blogs! We plan a trip in early September, so hopefully I’ll have some new, interesting content then. 🙂

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