Spring mushroom indicator species

1 Comment

While hunting morels, we often find other fungi fruiting in the same habitat.  True, it is disappointing not to find morels, but other interesting mushrooms reassure us that we are in the right place at the right time.  Maybe the morels are just not in this spot.

Note the disappearing veil remnants on the stem! Smell the distinct flavor of cucumber from the underside of the cap.

Note the disappearing veil remnants on the stem! Smell the distinct flavor of cucumber from the underside of the cap.

One of my favorite indicator species is Tricholoma vernaticum, the Cuke Trich.  It is a large white mushroom with a distinct smell of cucumber.  Note the evanescent ring on the lower stem.  To me, smelling this mushroom is like a breath of spring – like the spring flowers and lilacs in my yard.  It puts me in that exciting place where I can feel the aliveness of earth as life blossoms all around me. I love to find it in the woods and share the intense aroma with others.  All the literature I have says it is not an edible species. Okay with me.

 

 

 

 

 

Michael Beug's photo. Common find in the spring in Central Oregon.

Michael Beug’s photo. Common find in the spring in Central Oregon.

Another frequent fruiter during morel season is Hygrophorus subalpinus.  This large white mushroom is nearly underground early in the season and has a coating of dirt when picked.  If you look at the gills under the cap, you will notice they are very thick, almost like they were made of wax.  Rubbing a piece of the gill tissue between your fingers gives you the impression that your fingers are being coated with a thin layer of paraffin. Yes. This is a Waxy-cap,  Subalpine waxy-cap.  No, it is not edible unless you like to eat wax, and David Arora (Mushrooms Demystified) says it will coat your mouth.  What I notice most about Hygrophorus subalpinus is its whiteness. I mean, this mushroom is so very white WHITE that is seems unnatural, especially since it seems to get covered in dirt! When you turn it over to look at those waxy gills, note the beautiful white mushroom through and through! I wonder if they could make lotion from that waxy coating!

 

One thought on “Spring mushroom indicator species”

  1. Hunting truffles now a days is likely becoming a trend not just because of the the variety of culinary use of it but it also comes with a very high price tag. A lot of people would pay extra just to get a hold of a very delicious, delicate, and hard to find truffles. On the question how expensive truffles really are, you can read and watch this article about truffle hunting to learn more from https://www.trufflemagic.com/blog/search-real-truffle-truffle-hunters/

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.