Field Guide

Mushrooms

Showing 1 - 10 of 17 results
Media
Photo of an alcohol inky mushroom cut in half lengthwise.
Species Types
Scientific Name
Coprinopsis atramentaria (formerly Coprinus atramentarius)
Description
The alcohol inky has a gray-brown, bell-shaped, radially lined cap and inky gills. It grows in clusters on the ground, usually near rotting or buried wood.
Media
Photo of a blusher, a tan gilled mushroom, showing injured spot turning rust red
Species Types
Scientific Name
Amanita spp. (about 600 species, worldwide)
Description
This large group of mushrooms accounts for 90 percent of mushroom-related deaths, so every mushroom hunter should be familiar with amanitas. They contain one of the deadliest poisons found in nature!
Media
Photograph of a black morel mushroom
Species Types
Scientific Name
Morchella angusticeps (formerly M. elata)
Description
The black morel is a prized edible mushroom. It has a honeycombed cap with black to brownish black ridges and yellowish brown pits. It is completely hollow and grows in the spring.
Media
Photo of dog vomit slime mold, closeup, extruding red liquid.
Species Types
Scientific Name
Fuligo septica
Description
In addition to "dog vomit" and "scrambled eggs," this slime mold can also look like the foam at the top of a pint of stout beer, or a yellow or tan sponge. It grows on mulch and other decaying wood.
Media
Photo of earthstars, ball mushrooms with starlike rays, on forest floor
Species Types
Scientific Name
Geastrum species
Description
An earthstar is a roundish ball in the center of starlike rays. It grows on the ground in open woods.
Media
Photo of many tan fairy ring mushrooms, some uprooted, growing in grass
Species Types
Scientific Name
Marasmius oreades
Description
The fairy ring mushroom has a tan to reddish brown, knobbed cap with off-white gills. It grows in grassy areas, lawns, meadows, often in circles called fairy rings.
Media
hand holding white, umbrella-shaped mushroom
Species Types
Scientific Name
Chlorophyllum molybdites
Description
Green-spored lepiotas are large, white, with broad, cream-colored scales on the cap, white gills that turn gray-green, and a ring on the stalk. They grow in lawns and meadows, often in a circular arrangement called a "fairy ring."
Media
Photo of an aging grisette mushroom that is flat and tan on top and white below
Species Types
Scientific Name
Amanita vaginata
Description
The grisette has a gray cap with white patches and a radially grooved margin, and a stalk with a large, white, saclike cup around the base. It's found on the ground in open woods and in grass near trees.
Media
a row of little brown, umbrella-shaped mushrooms along a decaying log
Species Types
Scientific Name
Various species of confusingly similar mushrooms
Description
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!
Media
Photo of two meadow mushrooms, at different angles, white with pinkish tan gills
Species Types
Scientific Name
Agaricus campestris
Description
The meadow mushroom has a smooth white to light grayish cap and pinkish brown gills. It's found in lawns and other grassy areas.
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..