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Fungi in the Metro Parks


Fungi in the Metro Parks

When you're hiking, don't forget to look down at the colorful fungal fruits that accent the woods. Here are just a few of the kinds of fungi you could find in the Metro Parks:Download seasonal, online-only field guides here.

Turkey Tail

Trametes versicolor

The turkey tail is a fan-shaped, multicolor mushroom. It is found on the sides of logs and stumps, growing up to 4 inches wide. The underside is white with small pores.

When & Where to See it

Turkey tail can be found May through November in all of the Metro Parks.

Fun Fact

This mushroom gets its name from its colorful banding patterns, which resemble a turkey’s tail.

Chicken of the Woods

Laetporus sulphureus

The chicken of the woods fruits on living and dead trees (especially oaks). The caps are fan or irregular shaped, 2 to16 inches wide and a bright orange-yellow color.

When & Where to See it

This mushroom is found May through October and can be seen at F.A Seiberling Nature Realm, O’Neil Woods, Sand Run, Munroe Falls and Cascade Valley Metro Parks.

Fun Fact

This mushroom is reported to have the texture and flavor of chicken when cooked, thus the name “chicken of the woods.”

Dryad’s Saddle

Polyporus squamosus

This mushroom fruits on hardwood stumps and logs. It is circular or fan shaped, 2 to 12 inches wide and covered with large, red-brown scales on top.

When & Where to See it

When and where to see it: Dryad’s saddle is most often encountered in the month of May. You can find it in most of the Metro Parks.

Fun Fact

This mushroom is also called pheasant’s back because it is covered with brown scales that look like the feathers on the back of a pheasant.

Orange Mycena

Mycena leaiana

Description: This beautiful, gilled mushroom has a bright orange cap and is 1 to 2½ inches tall. It usually grows in clusters on decaying stumps and logs, particularly of beech trees. Look for it a few days after a heavy rain.

When & Where to See it

The orange mycena fruits from June to September and is very common in our parks.

Fun Fact

This mushroom is named in honor of Thomas Gibson Lea (Mycena leaiana), a Cincinnati naturalist who collected lots of fungi and sent them off to experts for identification.

Artist's Conk

Ganoderma applanatum

The cap of this mushroom is fan-shaped, woody and 2 to 20 inches across. It is brown to gray-brown in color and zoned with ridges and furrows. It is usually found growing in overlapping clusters on decaying logs and trees.

When & Where to See it

Artist’s conk can be found throughout the year in all of our parks.

Fun Fact

The smooth, white undersurface of this mushroom permanently stains brown when scratched, thus allowing you to carve writing and/or pictures in it.