Mushroom Identification to Genus

A presentation from John Stuart with contributions from the Western Pa Mushroom Club

Species list from Guyasuta on 06/28/2014

Species list entered by Dick Dougall.

List of species found on the walk at Guyasuta:

Amanita flavoconia (Yellow Patches)
Bolbitius vitellinus (Yellow Bolbitius)
Boletus bicolor (Red-and-yellow Bolete)
Cantharellus cibarius (Common Chanterelle; Golden Chanterelle)
Collybia dryophila (Oak-loving Collybia)
Hygrophorus psittacinus (Parrot Mushroom)
Hypomyces chrysospermus (Bolete Mold)
Lenzites betulina (Multicolor Gill Polypore)
Marasmiellus nigripes (Black-footed Marasmus)
Marasmius rotula (Pinwheel Marasmius)
Mycena inclinata ()
Mycena leaiana (Orange Mycena)
Panellus stipticus (Luminescent Panellus)
Pleurotus ostreatus (Oyster Mushroom)
Pluteus cervinus (Fawn (Deer) Mushroom)
Pluteus longistriatus (Pleated Pluteus)
Polyporus squamosus (Pheasant Polypore)
Schizophyllum commune (Split Gill)
Scleroderma citrinum (Pigskin Poison Puffball)
Scutellinia scutellata (Reddish Eyelash Cup)
Stemonitis splendens (Chocolate Tube Slime)
Stereum complicatum (Crowded Parchment)
Stereum ostrea (False Turkey-tail)
Tremellodendron pallidum (Jellied False Coral)
Tyromyces chioneus (White Cheese Polypore)



Mycena inclinata is a commonly found Mycena

Pictures by Peter Yeh

Oyster and Split gill Mushroom kits

At the May monthly meeting mushroom kits were distributed to all the members. There were four spawn available for your culturing enjoyment:

  1. Pleurotus eryngii also known as king trumpet mushroom
  2. Pleurotus ostreatus the oyster mushroom
  3. Schizophyllum commune the split gill fungus
  4. Agrocybe arvalis

Before the meeting began you were given a plastic shopping bag containing cottonseed hulls After the presentations everyone received  two ziplock bags. The small bag contained Pleurotus eryngii (king trumpet mushroom) spawn. The larger ziplock bag contained the oyster mushroom spawn. If you have not already started the kits place the bags of spawn in the fridge. There was also a little log with the Schizophyllum commune plugs in it and Agrocybe arvalis sclerotia left over from last year.

Oyster and king trumpet preparation

We recommend using the cotton seed hulls with the king trumpet spawn and use logs or straw as the substrate for the  oyster mushroom spawn.

Prepare hulls

  • Put hulls in a large pot (use 2 pots if necessary)
  • Add water to cover hulls Bring to a rolling boil
  • Drain water off hulls Replace hulls in pot and cool with cover on to room temperature
  • Mix spawn & hulls thoroughly
  • Put mix in plastic bag

Spawn growth

  • Incubate bag at room temp  and low light for 14 days
  • Watch mycelium grow from spawn over the hulls


  • Look for white clumps Cut ½ inch holes in plastic over clumps for fruiting
  • Mist the bag with water and incubate in a cool place
  • Harvest mushrooms when edges are slightly curled or uncurled

 Schizophyllum commune log

If you picked up a little log with the Schizophyllum commune plugs in it, you may not know what to do with it,  it needs to be kept in a shady damp place. This will probably not take long to fruit, Jim Tunney put some of the grain that was on the dowels in with the sawdust from some of the drilled holes into a bag and it’s forming primordia on the sawdust already.

Agrocybe arvalis scleroti

If you picked up some of the Agrocybe arvalis sclerotia, keep it in a moist place. Last year Jim Tunney recommended fruiting it in a 12 ounce plastic cup with a few holes poked in the side for air and one on the bottom for drainage. At least three people fruited it this way. Dave Fischer suggested potting soil. Which sounded good to Jim, the sclerotia friut in the debris from chips that mycelium grew in which is very similar to potting soil.



Morel Madness presentation from May 4, 2014

Meeting presentation by Dick Dougall & Jim Wasik

May-June 2014 newsletter published

The bimonthly newsletter has just gone out and should be in your inbox by now or your postbox in a few days time. It includes a Morel madness walk report, recipes, mushroom mug shots and more. You can see the first page here,

Morel websites

At the recent Hartwood Acres walk I heard about  an interesting website that I would like to pass on to club members, As many of you are aware morels are fruiting a little later this year. From looking at maps at the Morel Hunters website the culprit seems to be soil temperature rather than precipitation. The Morel hunters website crowd sources sightings of morels plotting them onto a map in a similar fashion to bird sightings, and other harbingers of spring, as reported at the Journey North website. There is also a general and State message boards where Morel Hunters share pictures and tales of their finds.

Not sure how to find a morel? The Ohio Mushroom society has a nice article about Morels and how to find them. That’s recommended reading before going on the The Great Morel Quest with John Plischke III on May 10th.

There are a number of other websites that specialize in Morel information, has soil temperature and precipitation maps as well as message boards but no sighting maps.  Let us know if you have other favorite morel websites.

Interested in finding Morels? Don’t miss these walks:

Hot and Sour soup

Morel season has arrived a bit later this year but that does not mean there are no edible mushrooms available for collecting. On a recent club walk in Hartwood acres we found quite a lot of Wood Ear mushroom Auricularia auricula-judae   which is a jelly fungus in the family Auriculariaceae. In Asia a different species of Wood Ear mushroom, Auricularia polytricha, is used in cooking. You can find fresh or dried Auricularia polytricha in the Asian stores on the strip in Pittsburgh.  The wood ear fungi are used in Asian dishes for their crisp, snappy texture and their color rather than their taste. You need quite a lot of them to make a decent sized dish so I supplemented this recipe with Shiitake mushrooms. Like many Chinese recipes there is quite a bit of preparation but the actual cooking is very quick. Serves 6 people as an appetizer.


  • 5 oz fresh Wood ear mushrooms or a mixture of wood ear and Shiitake mushrooms. Or 1 oz dried Wood ear mushrooms from an Asian store that have been rehydrated in warm water.
  • 6 oz extra firm Tofu, about 1/2 of a normal block.
  • 1 box of chicken broth and 2 cups of water or 6 cups of home made chicken stock.
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 pork chop, about 6 oz, bone removed
  • 5 oz can of slicked bamboo shoots
  • 4 tbs soy sauce
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tbs red wine vinegar plus 1 tbs balsamic vinegar or 5 tbs Chinese black vinegar if you have it
  • About 4 tbs cornstarch
  • 3 medium scallions
  • 1 tsp ground white pepper


  1. Whisk 1 tbs of the soy sauce with the sesame oil and 1 tsp cornstarch together in a medium bowl
  2. Slice the pork chop into 1 inch by 1/4 inch match sticks and mix with the soy sauce,  sesame oil and cornstarch mixture
  3. Mix 3 tbs of cornstarch with water in a bowl and set aside
  4. Whisk the egg in a small bowl
  5.  Slice the tofu into 1/2  cubes
  6. Clean the wood ear mushrooms removing any hard pieces, rehydrate if necessary
  7. Remove and discard the hard stems from the Shiitake mushrooms and slice the caps into 1/4 inch slices
  8. Mix the vinegar, ground pepper and 3 tbs soy sauce together in a bowl
  9. Now that everything has been prepared bring the broth to a boil and reduce the heat to a simmer.
  10. Add the mushrooms and bamboo shoots and cook for 5 minutes
  11. Add the tofu and marinated pork, stir to separate the pork pieces and simmer for 2 minutes
  12. Stir the cornstarch and water one more time and add to the soup and increase heat. Stir a couple of times as the soup thickens and turns translucent, 1 minute
  13. Add vinegar, pepper and soy sauce mixture, stir once and turn off heat
  14. Using a spoon drizzle the egg into the soup in thin streams
  15. Let the soup sit for a minute and turn the heat back on. Once the soup has reached a gentle boil turn the heat off and serve
  16. Top the bowls of soup with sliced scallions


Poisonous Wild Mushrooms

Gyromitra esculenta

Meeting presentation by John Stuart

March-April 2014 newsletter published

First newsletter of the year has been sent out and members should have revived a copy by email or post. You can see the first page here, members receive the full newsletter by post or email.  The newsletter included notes on the Washington/Greene County Chapter closing, reports on mushroom findings over the year and at Lincoff Foray, and a recipe amongst other information.


Pasta with mushrooms

Pasta with mushrooms

This is a little different from the classic pasta and mushroom dishes in that it does not use cream or dairy as a base for the sauce. The recipe works well with Farfalle shaped pasta, bow ties or butterflies, but any medium sized pasta shape would work. For the pictures I used Orecchiette as that is what I had available. Serves 4 to 6 people as a main course.   


  • A  bunch of mixed herbs,  basil, 1 small sprig rosemary and a fresh parsley
  • 2 lb fresh mushrooms can be store brought, wild or mixed. Chanterelles or other fleshy mushrooms are good.
  • 1 lb pasta (farfalle/bow ties for preference)
  • 1 0z dried porcini mushrooms
  • 2 oz unsalted butter
  • 2 tbs olive oil plus more for drizzling
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • Salt and pepper
  • Parmesan cheese


  1. Soak the dried porcini mushrooms in warm water for 20 minutes. Wash to remove any sand, cut off any hard parts and drain on a kitchen towel.
  2. Put some salted water onto boil
  3. Clean, dry, chop mushrooms about 1/4 think pieces is good. 
  4. Strip the rosemary leave from the stem and chop with the fresh herbs.
  5. When the water is boiling add the pasta and stir to prevent clumping.
  6. Melt the butter with 2 tbs olive oil in a sauté pan.
  7. Sauté all the mushrooms, herbs and garlic on high heat in butter and oil until lightly browned with a hint of crust and tender.
  8. Season mushrooms with salt and pepper and taste to check.
  9. Test to see when the pasta is cooked and drain when al dente.
  10. Place pasta in a shallow serving bowl and add mushrooms and drizzle with a good quality olive oil.
  11. Serve and sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese.


I used a mixture of fresh and frozen mushrooms including cultivated hen-of-the-woods/Maitake (Grifola frondosa), frozen chicken of the woods (Laetiporus sulphureu), Chanterelles (Cantharellus cibarius)  that had been “Dry-Fryed” and frozen. If using store brought button mushrooms try adding 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin  to the mushrooms when frying and juice from 1/2 lemon at the end for a different flavor.