Edible mushrooms in MO.

Edible mushrooms in MO.

Edible mushrooms in MO. Brandy Ferrell Tasha Black PUFFBALLS Description: Depending on their size, puffballs have been mistaken at a distance for everything from golf balls to sheep. These round or pear-shaped mushrooms are almost always whitish, tan or gray and may or may not have a stalk-like base. The interior of a puffball is solid white at first, gradually turning yellow, then brown as the mushroom ages. Finally, the interior changes to a mass of dark, powdery spores, Size: 1 to 12 inches in diameter, sometimes larger. SHAGGY MANE Description: The shaggy mane or lawyer's wig is so large and distinctive that with a little practice you can identify it from a moving car. The cap of a fresh specimen is a long, white cylinder with shaggy, upturned, brownish scales. The gills are whitish, and the entire mushroom is fragile and crumbles easily. Most important, as the

shaggy mane matures, the cap and gills gradually dissolve into a black, inky fluid, leaving only the standing stalk. Size: 4 to 6 inches tall, sometimes larger. CORAL FUNGI Description: These fungi appear as clumps of branching stems which point upward. They do look much like coral. Most are tan, whitish or yellowish; a few are pinkish or purple. Also called club fungi, antler mushrooms or doghair mushrooms. Size: clusters may be up to 8 inches high. MORELS (Morchella spp.) (left) Common Morel (center) Half-Free Morel (right) Black Morel Description: Sponge, pine cone and honeycomb mushroom--the nicknames of the morel--are all appropriate. Morels are easy to recognize and delicious to eat, making them the most popular wild mushroom in Missouri.

The surface of a morel is covered with definite pits and ridges, and the bottom edge of the cap is attached directly to the stem. Size: 2 to 12 inches tall. Bearded Tooth Description: With its clumps of hanging white "fur," this tooth fungus looks much like a polar bear's paw. It is pure white when fresh and young, but yellows with age. The bearded tooth may grow quite large, as much as a foot across. Its size and whiteness make it easy to spot against the dark logs on which it grows.

Other names include bear's head, satyr's beard and hedgehog mushroom. Size: 4 to 12 inches across. Oyster Mushroom (Pleurotus ostreatus) Description: Those hardy souls who take long winter walks are sometimes treated to the sight of a snowcapped mass of fresh oyster mushrooms growing on a tree or log. This large white, tan or ivory-colored mushroom is named for its oyster shell-like shape. It has white gills running down a very short, off-center

stem. Spores are white to lilac, and the flesh is very soft. Oyster mushrooms usually are found in large clusters of overlapping caps and always on wood. Size: 2 to 8 inches wide. Chanterelles (Cantharellaceae) (top) Chanterelles (bottom) Black Trumpet Description: Chanterelles are a great favorite of European mushroom hunters and are becoming more popular in the United States.

These mushrooms are funnel-or trumpet-shaped and have wavy cap edges. Most are bright orange or yellow, although one, the black trumpet, is brownish-black. Fresh chanterelles have a pleasant, fruity fragrance. To make sure you have a chanterelle, check the underside of the cap. Some species of chanterelle are nearly smooth underneath, while others have a network of wrinkles or gill-like ridges running down the stem. The ridges have many forks and crossveins and are always blunt-edged. (True gills are sharp-edged and knife-like). Size: 1/2 to 6 inches wide, 1 to 6 inches tall.

Boletes (Boletaceae) (left) Boletes (right) King Bolete Description: If you can picture a hamburger bun on a thick stalk, you will have a good idea of what most boletes look like. These sturdy, fleshy mushrooms can be mistaken at first glance for gilled mushrooms, but if you turn over a cap you will find a spongy layer of pores on the underside rather than bladelikegills. The pore layer can easily be pulled away from the cap. Bolete caps are usually brownish or reddish-brown, while the

pores may be whitish, yellow, orange, red, olive or brownish. Size: up to 10 inches tall; caps 1 to 10 inches wide. There are more than 200 species of boletes in North America. The King Bolete (Boletus edulis) is probably the best edible. Sulfur Shelf (Laetiporus sulphureus) Description: These mushrooms light up the forest with their brilliant orange-red caps and pale sulfur-yellow pore surfaces. Some specimens fade to a peach or salmon color.

The sulfur shelf always grows on wood, usually in large masses of overlapping caps. It has no stem; the cap is attached directly to the wood. The pores are tiny. Other names include chicken mushroom and chicken of the woods. Size: 2 to 12 inches wide. Hen-of-the-Woods (Grifola frondosa) Description: This mushroom really does look something like a large, ruffled chicken. It grows

as a bouquet of grayish-brown, fan-shaped, overlapping caps, with off-center white talks branching from a single thick base. On the underside, the pore surface is white. A single clump of hen-of-the-woods can grow to enormous size and weigh up to 100 pounds. It often grows in the same spot year after year Elizabeth & Skyler Poisonous snakes

Western Mud Snake Plains Hog-nosed Snake Eastern Hog-nosed Snake Prairie Kingsnake Speckled Kingsnake Red Milk Snake Eastern Coachwhip Mississippi Green Water Snake Yellow-bellied Water Snake Broad-banded Water Snake Diamond-backed Water Snake

Northern Water Snake Rough Green Snake Smooth Green Snake Bullsnake Graham's Crayfish Snake Ground Snake Midland Brown Snake Northern Red-bellied Snake Flat-headed Snake Western Ribbon Snake Plains Garter Snake

Eastern Garter Snake Lined Snake Rough Earth Snake Western Earth Snake Poisonous Plants (Barrett & Cody) The knowledge of the Missouri plants both bad and good is a knowledge very much needed in the explorers, hunters and any scouts life and as well for any one that lives in Missouri. They should know how to identify them, treat them and know the reaction to the skin it leaves. Here are some plants that cause confusion because they look so much alike: Poison ivy . . . three divided leaves...

Poison oak . . . three divided leaves... Fragrant sumac . . . three divided leaves... Box elder . . . three to seven divided leaves... Virginia creeper . . . three divided leaves... Poison sumac ... three divided leaves... Weird facts Poison ivy is part of the Cashew family To find Box elders down is where you will usually find the editable mushroom the Morals. And that concludes my report on poisonous plants in Missouri.

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