Orange Mock-oyster

Subscribe via RSS

Filed under Outdoor Notes

November 24, 2010

It is always a banner day to find a new mushroom and feel 99% sure that you know what it is. Really doesn’t happen too often–at least not to me.

Phyllotopsis nidulans

Orange Mock-oyster

This, is the Orange Mock-oyster (Phyllotopsis nidulans): Orange for the obvious reason, and Mock-oyster because it fruits at the same time of year and in the same general habitat on down logs and dead or dying trees as Oyster mushrooms (Pleurotus ostreatus).

Orange Mock-oyster

Note fuzz along the rim of the cap

That orange color and the neat fuzz along the rim of the cap pretty much nailed the identification, but I came across two diagnostic points that, while I didn’t need them, I hope to get the opportunity to confirm.

First, the thing is supposed to smell bad–I mean stink. Now any serious mushroom hunter will tell you you’re always supposed to take a whiff. I often forget, as I did this time, and I apparently missed something “special.” Many of the field guides will also tell you to check taste—ummm, well, let’s just say I ain’t the guy to be wandering through the woods licking mushrooms. I knew some folks in college like that; they did not earn my respect.

Second, the Orange Mock-oyster is supposed to have a pink spore print. For those of you that don’t know, one of the primary diagnostic methods for keying out mushrooms is the color of the spore print. If you wish to try this yourself, the basic process is to place the cap, gills or pores down, on a sheet of plain paper. Put a SMALL drop of water on the cap, and cover it with something like a bowl. Come back in an hour or so, and you should have a spore print. Each print aggregates enough of the microscopic pores that you can actually see their color on the paper (white on white is not so exciting, but you’ll get the idea).

Tags: , , , ,

« Previous:
Next: »

Leave a Reply

To foil the spamming nitwits:

* Copy This Password *

* Type Or Paste Password Here *

Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.

back to top