Field Guide

Mushrooms

Showing 1 - 2 of 2 results
Media
Photo of witches' butter, a yellow gelatinous bloblike fungus
Species Types
Scientific Name
Tremella mesenterica
Description
Witches' butter is a fungus that looks like small, yellow, irregularly lobed, gelatinous masses. It grows on dead deciduous wood, especially oaks.
Media
Photo of wood ear mushroom, which looks like a brownish human ear stuck to a log
Species Types
Scientific Name
Auricularia auricula (formerly A. auricula-judae)
Description
The wood ear is a reddish brown to grayish black, rubbery, earlike or cup-shaped mushroom. It usually grows in groups on rotting wood.
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..