Puffballs! Glorious puffballs!
It’s fair to say that I am a fan of puffballs, especially the Spiny puffball (Lycoperdon echinatum). Puffballs form their spores inside the fruit body and rely upon mechanisms such as raindrops, trampling and natural decay to aid spore dispersal.
Many puffball species are edible and tasty when young, while the flesh is still white. Some, however, cannot be eaten, so careful identification is needed prior to consumption.
Commonly, puffballs are confused with earthballs which are not edible and often poisonous; It’s a minefield out there folks.
Earthball fungi (Citrine earthball. Common earth ball, Pigskin poison puffball)
Scleroderma citrinum (Boletales - Sclerodermataceae), the Common Earthball, is similar in appearance to a warty potato. Acid soils, especially on the compacted paths in forests, are its main habitat.
The color of these probably poisonous fungi varies from light ochre to mid brown, but usually there is a lemon-yellow tinge, especially to the upper surface. For this reason another of its common names is Citrine Earthball.
This species is very common and widespread throughout of Britain and Ireland, and is also found throughout mainland Europe and in North America.
Earth ball, Scleroderma (fungus). Was cycling through the woods today, and came across this round fungi on a strip full of them. Thought that it was a truffle, but it turned out that it wasn’t. The web is so amazing that these days, with search terms close enough you are likely to get the search results you desired. Thus given the time, and in regards to simple stuff, there shouldn’t be any excuse anymore to say ‘I don’t know’, instead, one should say ‘I’ll google it’. By the way, to know more about this fungi-earth ball, here is the link http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earth_ball.
September 7th - More fungi today; spotted in open pasture near Longdon, glistening ink caps, and lycoperdon puffballs and rhizopogon earthballs (I may have some, all or none of that wrong, I leave fungi to experts). Considering the relative conformity of plant life in the UK, fungi like this looks almost alien and distinctly odd.