Field Guide

Mushrooms

Showing 1 - 10 of 16 results
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
Image of smooth chanterelle
Species Types
Scientific Name
Cantharellaceae (various members of family)
Description
Chanterelles are funnel- or trumpet-shaped and have wavy cap edges. Most are bright orange or yellow, although one, the black trumpet, is brownish black.
Media
Photo of a cinnabar chanterelle, vase-shaped red-orange mushroom
Species Types
Scientific Name
Cantharellus cinnabarinus
Description
The cinnabar chanterelle is a small, reddish orange, vase-shaped mushroom with forked ridges on the underside that descend the stalk. It grows in the soil.
Media
Photo of destroying angel showing large saclike cup around the base of stalk
Species Types
Scientific Name
Amanita bisporigera
Description
The destroying angel is all white, with a ring on the stalk and a large, saclike cup around the base of the stalk. This deadly poisonous mushroom is very common, growing on the ground in mixed woods and in grass near trees.
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
Photo of golden chanterelles, yellow and white vase-shaped mushrooms
Species Types
Scientific Name
Cantharellus cibarius
Description
Golden chanterelles have a bright orange to yellow cap with wavy margins; beneath, they're orange-yellow, with forked ridges (not true gills) descending the stalk. They grow in soil.
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 lobster mushroom, which is orange-yellow and finely bumpy
Species Types
Scientific Name
Hypomyces lactifluorum
Description
In a lobster mushroom, the cap, gills, and stalk of a host mushroom are covered by a finely bumpy, vivid orange to orange-red layer of mold. The gills of the host mushroom can be entirely obscured by the parasite.
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..