Fascinating Fungi at Rowallane Garden this autumn

Fungi fruit

Take a walk through Rowallane Garden and you'll uncover a broad range of weird and wonderful fungi. Most of the time, the fungus is hidden from view because it is growing through the soil, under fallen logs or decaying plants. When conditions are just right, which might be once or twice a year, the fungus can form together to create the fruit body of the fungus that we see. These fruit bodies are the fruits of the fungus - just like apples are the fruits of an apple tree.

'Coprinopsis Armamentaria'  AKA Ink Cap

Ink Cap Mushroom, with boot for size comparison
Ink Cap Mushroom, with boot for size comparison

Look out for the 'Coprinopsis armamentaria', a tall fungus, commonly known as an 'Ink Cap'. These clusters of mushrooms rise after rainfall from spring to autumn. The grey-brown cap is initially bell-shaped before opening, after which, it flattens and disintegrates. Coprinopsis Armamentaria is also known as 'Tipplers Bane'. It receives this name as when consumed within 48 hours of alcohol results in a 'disulfiram syndrome'. Symptoms include facial reddening, nausea, vomiting, malaise, agitation, palpitations and tingling in limbs, myocardial infarction (a heart attack). To avoid this tipplers trap, please do not eat any of our fungi.

 'Sparassis Crispa' AKA Cauliflower Fungus.

You will not miss the huge 'Sparassis Crispa'; a Cauliflower Fungus. The fruit bodies of Cauliflower Fungus are cream, often with yellowish tints when dry, with white flesh.
Cauliflower Fungus

Our head gardener Averil, examines the Cauliflower Fungus and uses it as a way to measure the health of the tree, 'This is a brown rotter. This will feed on the brown tissue in the tree. Sometimes it feeds on roots, and this can be an indication that your roots are compromised'. The gardening team are currently keeping an eye on the fungi.

'Ganoderma'  AKA shelf mushrooms

Shelf Mushrooms, it is easy to see why they have been given this name
Shelf Mushrooms
 'Ganoderma' popularly referred to as 'shelf mushrooms' or 'bracket fungi'. This fungus can embed itself in damaged bark and burrow down into the tree over many years. It is possible to work out the age of the Ganoderma by counting the number of ridges of the fungus. Our head gardener said that this part of the fungus is about 16 years old.
How to count the age of a Ganoderma
How to conunt the age of a Ganoderma
Keeping count of these rings is important. The bracket fungi are feeding on the tree and when this stops growing it can be an indication that the tree is now compromised. If you spot any more fungi during your walk around Rowallane Garden, please share your discoveries with us at: Facebook