Field Guide

Mushrooms

Showing 1 - 10 of 16 results
Media
Photograph of cluster of mature gem-studded puffball mushrooms
Species Types
Scientific Name
Lycoperdon perlatum
Description
The gem-studded puffball is a white, rounded to turban-shaped ball, densely covered with spiny warts, developing a pore at the top. It grows on the ground in open woods, along roads, in waste areas.
Media
Photo of smooth chanterelles, vase-shaped yellow and white mushrooms
Species Types
Scientific Name
Cantharellus lateritius
Description
The smooth chanterelle has a bright orange to yellow cap, wavy margins, and is smooth on the underside. It grows singly or in large groups in the soil.
Media
puffball mushroom
Species Types
Scientific Name
Calvatia gigantea (Langermannia gigantea)
Description
The giant puffball is a huge, white, smooth ball with a completely white interior that becomes yellowish green with age. It grows in open pastures, woods, and lawns.
Media
Photo of uprooted rooting polypore mushroom on pavement, showing cap.
Species Types
Scientific Name
Polyporus radicatus
Description
The rooting polypore has a scruffy, tough, yellowish-brown cap with whitish-yellow pores, and a stalk with a long, black, rootlike filament. It usually grows singly, on the ground near stumps or attached to buried roots.
Media
Photo of two ash tree boletes, tan pored mushrooms, one overturned showing pores
Species Types
Scientific Name
Boletinellus merulioides
Description
The ash tree bolete is a pored mushroom with a brownish, wavy cap, an off-center stalk, and clearly defined pores. It grows scattered on the ground near ash trees.
Media
Two-colored Bolete
Species Types
Scientific Name
Boletus bicolor
Description
The two-colored bolete has a rose red cap that is sometimes yellowish toward the margin. The underside has tiny yellow pores, and the stalk is reddish yellow; all parts slowly bruise blue. Grows singly or in groups of up to several, on the ground under oaks.
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 common morels growing on forest floor
Species Types
Scientific Name
Morchella species
Description
Favorites among Missouri wild edibles, true morels only appear in the spring. They're very hard to see, but that's part of the fun of hunting them. Learn to identify them, and you can enjoy the hunt, too.
Media
Photo of common morels growing on forest floor
Species Types
Scientific Name
Morchella esculentoides (formerly M. esculenta)
Description
The yellow morel is a choice edible mushroom. It has a honeycombed cap with yellow to grayish to tan ridges and pits. It is completely hollow and grows in the spring.
Media
Photo of a pigskin puffball.
Species Types
Scientific Name
Scleroderma citrinum (Scleroderma aurantium)
Description
The pigskin puffball is a rounded, warted, yellowish brown ball with blackish purple flesh. It grows on the ground, on wood debris, and near trees in woods.
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..