Michigan
Mushroom Hunters Club

This page is used to feature mushrooms that are prevalent for the particular time of the year or, during the winter months, to feature some of the less desirable or hard to find mushrooms. To see some of our previous stars follow this link to an index of previously featured mushrooms.

                  June's Mushroom of the Month

Psathyrella candolleana: Common Psathyrella, Suburban Psathyrella

            

The common Psathyella is often found in lawns and gardens, hence the common name, the suburban Psathyrella.  This fragile mushroom is a saprobe, decaying buried wood (often roots) in lawns and gardens.  This mushroom is edible but you’ll be lucky to get any specimens home in one piece.

The cap is conical to bell shaped when young, becoming convex to flat with a darker umbo with age.   The yellowish brown to whitish caps range from 1 to 4 inches (2.5 to 10 cm) wide and are thinly fleshed.  The adnate gills are very crowded and narrow, white when young, becoming grayish, then dark brown or purplish. The stem is 1 ½ to 4 inches (4 to 10 cm.) long and 1/8 to ¼ inches (3 to 8 mm.) wide.  Although young specimens have a white partial veil, only rarely are there remnants along the cap edges and only rarely are there rings on the stalk.  The flesh is white and odor and taste are pleasant.  The spore print is purplish brown.  Recently, further analysis has moved this species to the genus Stropharia.  The habitat is on dead wood, often on buried roots.  It is found in urban and suburban settings, but also in hardwoods.

Although this mushroom is edible, I have found no reference to its taste, nor any recipe featuring this mushroom.  Though it is a common mushroom, it is hard to distinguish between other species of Psathyrella without microscopic analysis.  I have not tasted this mushroom and, because of the difficulty identifying it and the very thin fragile flesh, I do not recommend trying it.