Mushroom identification

Asked June 19, 2018, 8:30 AM EDT

Found this mushroom the 2nd week of june 2018 in southern chester county. Mushroom growing on a dead tree. Originally thought it was a chanterelle and seems to look more like a Jack o'lantern considering chanterelles usually don't grow on dead trees.

Chester County Pennsylvania mushroom identification

1 Response

Thank you for contacting Cooperative Extension,

It's difficult to tell without seeing the specimens. This looks like the ringless honey mushroom, Armillaria, but it almost looks like you have two types, light and yellow, with different gills. the jack o lantern grows in clumps at the base of trees and is more orange. It could also be an oyster, but I can't see the top of the cap, and they would grow in clumps. Armillaria has popped up in many places this summer, due to rains we had earlier in the season. The fungus grows at the base of trees, or where there had once been a tree and there may be tree roots still left underground.

The mushrooms can be raked or mowed over, to dislodge and break up. They are mostly water, so they will fade away, but may come back in a few weeks or next year, until the organic material in the soil is broken down. These fungi are decomposers in our ecosystem, and play an important role.

I recommend that people do not eat fungi they collect in the wild, unless they absolutely have it identified in person by an expert. There is some question as to edibility for these honey mushrooms. They are not harmful to people, pets, or the lawn turfgrass.

Thank you for contacting Cooperative Extension,
Nancy