Identification: Round fungus to ID

Discussion in 'Fungi, Lichens and Slime Molds' started by TexCedar, Jul 25, 2009.

  1. TexCedar

    TexCedar Member

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    here are some fungi I saw growing in one of my gardens beneath a podocarpus and some ferns. Any idea what it is? I've never noticed this one before. I live in south central texas.
     

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  2. TexCedar

    TexCedar Member

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    Re: Round fungus to ID - this may help

    here are a few more pictures i took tearnig one apart
     

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  3. togata57

    togata57 Contributor 10 Years

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    Young puffball fungi, perhaps.
     
  4. Michael F

    Michael F Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Some sort of truffle?
     
  5. C.Wick

    C.Wick Active Member

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    I'm not sure of any truffles that grow above ground? However...LOTS of puffballs...especially young...resemble this fellow above.
    Did you uncover these or were they above the soil when you found them?
    Many of the puffballs start off white in the centers...then as they age the spore turns dark and then erupts from the top of the skins. Keep an eye on these...if they're a toxic version like the pigskin or other (the toxic ones are dark skinned)...you might want to make VERY sure you wash anything that grows in the immediate area before eating.
     
  6. TexCedar

    TexCedar Member

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    they were growing just underneath some wood chip mulch, and decomposing oak tree leaves. I scraped that back a little to limb up the little tree. Some kind of truffle occured to me first since they're round. But having looked at pictures on other sites I'm thinking some kind of puffball. I have no intention of eating them.

    "you might want to make VERY sure you wash anything that grows in the immediate area before eating."

    There is nothing edible in that garden. But if there were, could being near a poisonous fungus really make an adjacent vegetable unsafe to eat? I'm guessing the spores are poisonous?
     
  7. MycoRob

    MycoRob Active Member

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    Do your fungi have any particular odor? if no odor when fresh, pick one, let it set on your counter for 24 hrs and then check for odor.
     
  8. fish dr

    fish dr Active Member

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    No, it cannot make any plant nearby unfit to eat. unless it was already poisonous, of course.

    "you might want to make VERY sure you wash anything that grows in the immediate area before eating." seems a statement from a position of extreme caution. You might, but then , I wouldn't.

    We breathe in millions of spores every day...and here we are....

    Most puffballs have an incredibly strong (delicious) smell. That doesn't make them edible tho...

    So do amanitas...
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2009
  9. C.Wick

    C.Wick Active Member

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    fishdr...i say this as someone who made the mistake of accidently breathing in an excessive amount of these spores..and know someone who ATE some of the spore by accident after picking them then blueberries and not washing their hands before eating the berries.
    if my extremeties seems a bit much? i'll let u do the puking next time. :o)
     
  10. MycoRob

    MycoRob Active Member

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    As someone who handles mushroom poisoning calls, what kind of mushroom spores contaminated the blueberries and made someone ill?
     
  11. fish dr

    fish dr Active Member

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    I must admit my error that I never thought of fruits, which are kind of a part of the plant that's highly subject to decay. Once fruit is picked, handled and spores germinated , there would seem to be a good possibility of food-borne illness.

    Still, it would surprise me that if ungerminated spores could make some one sick.
    If you know of specific ungerminated spores that cause gastro-intestinal symptoms I want to hear about it. Bread and beer yeasts make me puke but they're not spores, are they ? and they're dead when I eat or drink them.

    I am exposed to a large amount of fungiphobia and it triggers me. I know of people who will insist their eyes are damaged if they look at a mushroom out the car window. You can see on this site all the time the knee-jerk sequence "there's a fungus...it makes me afraid...how do I kill it". I find it annoying.

    In growing mushrooms I am exposed to lots of contaminant spores at higher than normal levels, and I have never been sick....I am well aware, though I have not suffered them, of respiratory illnesses suffered by mushrooms growers exposed to massive spore loads, such as are only found in growing houses.

    I commonly handle poisonous mushrooms including amanitas including Death Cap and Destroying angel, and have neither been vigilant about washing nor have I been sick from mushroom or spore.

    But then I tend to have a cast iron stomach anyway.

    I now remember that a very few (usually foreign tourists) are killed near my home here on Vancouver island by a mysterious killer fungus. It must be stated that many more locals and tourists do not get sick and die, under apparently identical circumstances.

    If I were eating wildcrafted foods and got afterwards sick, I would be more prone to suspect bacteria than spores, even knowing that there were spores.

    Perhaps it is simply good policy to wash everything before you eat it, especially if you have a sensitive digestion, but I won't give up my unwashed berries by the road.

    To quot Clint Eastwood as Dirty Harry "A man has to know his limitations".

    And we should determine ours.
     
  12. C.Wick

    C.Wick Active Member

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    The spores my friend claims he was in contact with then handled the blueberries was of some of the dark-skinned earthen puffballs. I can't get him to specify on which but he says after cutting many open to do studies of the thickness of skin he just 'dusted his hands off' on his pants. He said that less then 10 min's later he collected some blueberries then ate them before finishing his foray.
    He said that hours later the cramps started, not severe...but enuf it left him throwing up off and on for several hours.
    He also told me that he DID wash the rest of his collected berries after that and had no issues. As we both do this on forays when I visit, I've never had that happen from eating the berries.....
    TRUST me fishdr...I too, am one of those who gets ultra frustrated by the 'fear factor'... but as you and I are a bit more acclimated (shall we say?) to mushrooms, spore, fungi, moulds and other....we have fewer issues then one who is blindly inhaling/injesting spores for the possible first time of a fungus that becomes toxic once it spores.
    Sorry to TexCedar who didn't realize this post was going to become so drama filled. :o)
     

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