Cornell University


is that a sheep?

Mystery liverwort fungus, chapter 3

What could it be, this liverwort thing? Has anyone ever seen this before? FAM pursues the fungus through the musty dusty literature and the well-stocked but torturous passageways of his own brain. Finally, the magical powers of Santa Claus are invoked.

jar full o stink

Phallus ravenelii: the common stinkhorn, Ravenel’s stinkhorn

Stink stink stink, we love stinkhorns. A little about their sordid history and biology here. What’s not to like?

Hydnum umbilicatum

Hydnum umbilicatum, the sweet tooth

A pretty, tasty little fungus. With lots of teeth.


$#%!&! Red Russulas

Beginning mushroomers often think a field guide is the key to all knowledge. But there are some kinds of mushrooms that even intrepid field guide authors fear. The little brown ones (LBMs, we call them), yes, but also these big handsome red Russulas (JARs: sigh, Just Another Russula).

Pycnoporus dye

Dyeing with Lichens & Mushrooms

Dying with lichens and mushrooms! We gave it a good shot with help from a local expert on natural dyes. It was fun.

shaggy to inky

Shaggy Mane Time Lapse

Here’s a time lapse of some shaggy mane mushrooms. They are also called inky caps, and you’ll see why.


Blewit eaters

Blewits are tasty purple mushrooms, so it’s always exciting to find them. But imagine how excited I was when I found they had an ornate and seldom-seen parasitic mold growing on them. Do you know me at all? I was ecstatic.


Phylloporus, a gilled bolete

Phylloporus rhodoxanthus is a mushroom with gills, but here we reveal its secret allegiance with the tribe of boletes. Boletes are normally not gilled, but instead have pores or tubes that form a spongy layer beneath their caps. Sneaky Phylloporus.

deadly angels

The destroying angel

The destroying angel is a notorious mushroom, because it’s quite deadly. It’s also very handsome and stately. When you are learning mushrooms, this is a good one to learn early on. Spore print color, the annulus, the volva…all these things can help you tell it apart from friendlier mushrooms, if you know what to look for.


Most people don't pay much attention to fungi, which include things like mushrooms, molds, yeasts, and mildews. Here at Cornell we think they're pretty fascinating. In fact, even the most disgusting foot diseases and moldy strawberries are dear to our hearts. We'd like to talk to you about fungi, so that like us, you too can tell gross stories at the dinner table. Afterwards, maybe you'll notice some things you would have overlooked before, and we think this could be good for the planet.

Kathie T. Hodge, Editor

Beneath Notice, our book of borescopic mycology.


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