Looking like a ruffled chicken, the edible hen of the woods mushroom grows like large circular bouquet of spoon-shaped caps, each grayish brown on top and white beneath, emerging from a branching, whitish base. It grows on the ground at the base of oak trees.
This polypore is an orange to tan, fan-shaped bracket that is scaly on top; the underside has rows of white, six-sided, radially arranged pores. It grows singly or in groups on dead branches of deciduous trees.
The honey mushroom has a honey-colored, sticky cap with black hairs over the center, and a stalk with a whitish ring. It grows in clusters at the bases of trees or stumps, especially oaks, and over buried wood.
Is that a wildflower, or a mushroom? Unlike most plants, Indian pipe lacks chlorophyll, so it is white, not green. Below ground, its roots join with fungi that connect to tree roots. This plant, then, takes nourishment indirectly from the trees.
Jack-o’-lanterns are bright orange to yellowish orange, with sharp-edged gills that descend the stalk. They grow in clusters, at the base of stumps, and from buried roots of oak and other deciduous wood.
Like the LGBs (“little gray birds”) of the birdwatchers, this is a catchall category. It includes all the small to medium-sized, hard-to-identify brownish mushroom with spores of all colors. There are many hundreds of species that fit this description!
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