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This glorious cluster of mushrooms are Oysters. A ‘safe’ edible for people not allergic to fungi. Of my top 10…this is my number 2 favorite of the wilds.
These are often refered to as Winter Mushrooms as they are found even in snowfall (there WAS snow on the ground the day I photographed these) but they can also be found in the heat of summer as long as there’s been good rainfall.
Best way to ID this species is the gill structure. These mushrooms are found growing on dead/dying hardwoods like Oak…usually a pale cream on top and underneath. Sometimes can be found in grays/violets/pinks/browns and even blue….all depending on location and time of season. Oysters will ALWAYS have a white spore print. The gills are what stand out for me…as you can see in this photo the gills aren’t all perfectly straight……often there is veining and cross-hatching. This is not ALWAYS true but when you find a pure white mushroom with a semi-stem that is thick and robust growing on mentioned host……with white spore……’s VERY likely an Oyster or member of it’s family.
Favorite ways to eat? Slivered and sauteed in olive oiled VERY lightly…then added to a homemade alfredo sauce and linguine. I usually add chicken to this meal as well as onions and tomatoes. Yum yum!
They can also be dipped in milk, then flour with salt and parmesean cheese and lightly fried. Gawd that is good stuff too………but so quickly disappears when made this way.
Although I collect mine in the wild, these are now available in food markets/stores world-wide.
Remember…every mushroom can be eaten but not all are safely edible. If in doubt…THROW IT OUT! I only harvest what I know for sure without ANY doubt. Although I do not know of mushrooms in my area that can be mistaken for Oysters when following all clues…I’m sure there are somewhere that are too similiar and maybe not safe.
Found in December in Kansas, USA


  • Marilyn Harris
    Marilyn Harrisalmost 2 years ago

    Beautiful! :o)

  • This is a species that can just leave me in awe! Thanx so much Marilyn….I thought they were gorgeous :o)

    – Carla Wick/Jandelle Petters

  • Larry Lingard-Davis
    Larry Lingard-...almost 2 years ago

    Incredible Carla…..
    This has to be one of the best Fungi Macro’s that I have ever seen…!!!!!
    The clarity is exceptional.

  • I saw them at a distance and just stopped…almost crying…it’s been so long since we’ve really had fungi here where I’m at because of a severe drought. Finding these and just seeing what an amazing display they were….wow. Thanx so much Larry….these were photographed with my Olympus IR-500…a pocket camera!

    – Carla Wick/Jandelle Petters

  • John44
    John44almost 2 years ago

    Very beautiful image Carla

  • My thanx John! Wish I could find more like this right now.

    – Carla Wick/Jandelle Petters

  • George Lenz
    George Lenzalmost 2 years ago

    nice find and capture

  • Thanx so much George! They were delicious too! :o)

    – Carla Wick/Jandelle Petters

  • Karirose
    Karirosealmost 2 years ago

    Oh what a beautiful shot! They are lovely, indeed. Glad you enjoyed them! :D

  • oh geeeeze am I behind on replies here! Sorry so late….and thanx so much my friend!

    – Carla Wick/Jandelle Petters

  • Manon Boily
    Manon Boilyalmost 2 years ago

    wow! this is so great! a lovely the pattern Carla and it’s cool with the small one in the middle. very nice shot ;)

  • Akkra
    Akkraalmost 2 years ago

    Cool! They all look like they are peeking out of the tree. :)

  • they made me think of a static burst or something! :o) Sorry so late to reply my friend… and the net haven’t been getting along lately

    – Carla Wick/Jandelle Petters

  • Manon Boily
    Manon Boilyalmost 2 years ago

    this picture deserve all the honors. beautiful shot Carla!

    don’t forget to enter your picture in the January 2013 features images

  • my sincere and extremely late thanx Manon!

    – Carla Wick/Jandelle Petters

  • MotherNature
    MotherNaturealmost 2 years ago

    Fungi are so beautiful, band your talent with a camera makes them even more so. These are an instant fave, Carla – at least as wild, growing fungi. Cooked – so happy you enjoy them like that but I’m still not sure enough of my identifications to chance it:>). Congratulations on your feature in Fungilicious – FAVE:>)

  • During somet times of the year I can purchace these at our local store as well! I just planted some spore into a hay stack in my yard….we’ll see how that goes (keeping fingers crossed but not holding breath)
    Sorry so late to respond…….net issues finally fixed!

    – Carla Wick/Jandelle Petters

  • Kat Simmons
    Kat Simmonsalmost 2 years ago

    Oh wow, this is perfect!!

  • That was my feelings exactly! Thanx Kat (and sorry so late to respond!)

    – Carla Wick/Jandelle Petters

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