Hub Lake Trail, Lolo National Forest, St. Regis, MT August 16, 2015 Robert Niese
These adorable gregarious fungi are found on rotting coniferous logs in
wet forests throughout North America (presumably). These specimens were only just starting to grow, but would likely end up covering the entire wet bottom half of this downed spruce log. Their caps, when fully mature, will measure no more than 2cm across and have a white spore print.
The final harvest… I found a lot of familiar edibles on this trip (crown-tipped coral, #5; lobster, #8), as well as a few boletes & shelf mushrooms I have yet to spore print.
I’ll probably toss most of the bag because there are 3 major mushroom rules to follow:
“Small & brown, put it down”
(Because most small, brown mushrooms have a lot of look-alikes and can be easily confused)
“When in doubt, throw it out”
( A lot of them were so fresh and soft that they crumbled in a heap together, so better not to play with poison, eh?)
“A shroom with a gill can make you ill”
(Some gilled mushrooms are fine, such as portobellos, but a lot are not, so better safe than sorry)
So far, the coral was delicious after cooking it up in some butter! Had a peppery taste that went nicely with my pasta.