Mushroom Facts and Warning

When picking wild mushrooms, beware of poisonous ones

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Are you in the dark about mushrooms? Enlighten yourself about this wonderfully tasty fungus, from the basic button mushroom to the more unusual varieties. Once you become familiar with the different mushroom varieties, try one of the many mushroom recipes.

Mushroom Facts

There are over 38,000 varieties of mushrooms available, over 3,000 in North America alone, with varying colors, textures and flavors.

Some are so rare that they only grow for one week during the year.

They grow wild in many areas, but most mushrooms on the market are commercially-grown on farms. Mushrooms do not depend upon photosynthesis to grow. They need only rain and moderate temperatures to proliferate. The best mushroom harvesting is done while it is raining.

Warning! Many mushrooms are poisonous

Some areas are known for their prized wild mushrooms, but it is most important that you research your target thoroughly if you intend to harvest your own wild mushrooms because many are highly toxic and life-threatening.

Please do not rely upon any casual column to determine toxicity of wild mushrooms. The danger inherent in many poisonous varieties of mushrooms cannot be over-stressed.

Unless you are well-educated in all types of mushrooms, particularly in identification of poisonous ones, it is wise to purchase your mushrooms from a reputable grower or grocer rather than hunting them yourself.

A simple identification error can lead to symptoms of sweating, cramps, diarrhea, confusion, convulsions, and potentially result in liver damage with a mortality rate of 60 percent or higher.

Why take the chance?

More About Mushrooms and Mushroom Recipes:

Mushroom Equivalents, Measures, and Substitutions
How to Clean Mushrooms
Common Edible Mushroom Varieties
• Mushroom Facts and Warning
Mushrooms and Health
Mushroom History
Mushroom Recipes


Mushroom Cookbook: Recipes for White & Exotic Varieties
The Mushroom Lover's Mushroom Cookbook and Primer
The Complete Mushroom Book
The Totally Mushroom Cookbook
More Cookbooks