Field Guide

Mushrooms

Showing 1 - 10 of 39 results
Media
Photo of velvet foot mushrooms, mature, showing black stems.
Species Types
Scientific Name
Flammulina velutipes
Description
The velvet foot, or enoki, has a tawny, sticky cap with whitish gills. The stalk is yellowish above and brownish below. They grow in clusters on deciduous logs.
Media
Top-view photo of three dryad's saddles, a tan bracket fungus, growing on wood
Species Types
Scientific Name
Polyporus squamosus
Description
The dryad's saddle is a large, fleshy, scaly, yellowish tan bracket fungus with large, yellowish white pores and a short stalk; it smells like watermelon rind. It grows singly or in layers, on living or dead deciduous wood.
Media
Photo of false turkey tail bracket fungus closeup, one showing smooth underside
Species Types
Scientific Name
Stereum ostrea
Description
False turkey tail grows in large, layered groups of leathery, parchmentlike brackets with multicolored zones and a smooth underside. Look for it on stumps and logs of deciduous trees, especially oaks.
Media
Photo of big cluster of turkey tails, bracket fungus with concentric color rings
Species Types
Scientific Name
Trametes versicolor
Description
Turkey tail grows in clusters of leathery, thin brackets with multicolored zones above and whitish yellow pores below. Look for it on stumps and logs of deciduous trees.
Media
Photo of several violet toothed polypores, violet-gray bracket fungi
Species Types
Scientific Name
Trichaptum biforme
Description
The violet toothed polypore is a bracket fungus with tough, hairy caps with violet margins and zones of white, brown, and black; beneath, the whitish violet pores break into teeth. It grows on stumps and logs of deciduous wood.
Media
Photo of multicolor gill polypore, a colorfully zoned bracket fungus on a log
Species Types
Scientific Name
Lenzites betulina
Description
Multicolor gill polypore is a bracket fungus with a semicircular, tough, hairy, multicolored, zoned cap; beneath, it's white, with leathery, gill-like tubes. It grows on dead deciduous wood.
Media
Photo of hen of the woods, large round mass of grayish mushrooms
Species Types
Scientific Name
Grifola frondosa
Description
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.
Media
Photo of black-staining polypore, a mushroom with tan, wavy, fan-shaped caps
Species Types
Scientific Name
Meripilus sumstinei (formerly M. giganteus)
Description
The black-staining polypore grows in large, circular clusters of many fleshy, grayish yellow, fan-shaped caps, which bruise black when cut or touched. It grows on the ground around deciduous trees, especially oaks.
Media
Photo of an aging Ravenel's stinkhorn, a column-shaped fungus with dark spores
Species Types
Scientific Name
Phallus ravenelii
Description
Ravenel's stinkhorn is a long, whitish column with a greenish, smelly slime covering the top, and a whitish or pinkish cup around the base. It grows on wood debris, mulch, rotted stumps, and sawdust, and in deciduous woods.
Media
Photo of mature dead man's fingers mushrooms, lumpy grayish black masses
Species Types
Scientific Name
Xylaria polymorpha
Description
Dead man’s fingers is a black, distorted, clublike or finger-shaped fungus with a wrinkled, charcoal-like surface. It grows in clusters at the base of rotting deciduous trees and stumps.
See Also
Media
Photo of several pinesap plants showing multiple flowers per stalk.
Species Types
Scientific Name
Monotropa hypopitys
Description
Pinesap is a plant that puts the "wild" in wildflower! It lacks chlorophyll, so its roots connect to fungi underground and absorb nutrients from the fungi.
Media
Picture of a patch of filamentous green algae floating in a stream.
Species Types
Scientific Name
Cladophora, Pithophora, and Spirogyra spp., and others
Description
Filamentous green algae forms green, cottony masses that are free-floating or attached to rocks, debris, or other plants.
Media
Photo of several Indian pipe plants with flowers, rising out of leaf litter.
Species Types
Scientific Name
Monotropa uniflora
Description
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.

About Mushrooms in Missouri

Mushrooms are a lot like plants, but they lack chlorophyll and have to take nutrients from other materials. Mushrooms are neither plants nor animals. They are in a different kingdom — the fungi. Fungi include the familiar mushroom-forming species, plus the yeasts, molds, smuts, and rusts.

Always be cautious when eating edible mushrooms. Be absolutely sure of the ID, and only eat a small amount the first time you try it to avoid a reaction..