Types of mushrooms and their characteristics

Mushrooms are a separate kingdom, which has a huge variety of species included in it. People use only a small number in cooking. Some varieties are used in medicine. To recognize valuable specimens, you need to know what types of mushrooms exist, how they look.

Types of mushrooms and their characteristics

Mushroom classification

The classification was based on the criterion of edibility. The whole kingdom was divided into:

Edible: this includes those species whose representatives are suitable for use even in raw or dried form. However, doctors recommend that they be subjected to heat treatment.

Conditionally edible: this group includes those species that are consumed only after prolonged heat treatment. Before cooking, they are soaked in water. Some species boil 2-3 times, each time changing the water. Also in this group fall those mushrooms that are consumed if they are not overripe.

Inedible mushrooms: they are divided into hallucinogenic and poisonous. The first after use cause hallucinations, the second is mortally dangerous. If you use a large number of hallucinogenic mushrooms, a person runs the risk of dying. Criminal liability is provided for the collection, use and distribution of hallucinogenic mushrooms. Hallucinations - images that arise in the human mind without the presence of the so-called external stimulus. They are due to the special chemical composition, which includes muscarine, psilocybin or psilocin.

Irina Selyutina (Biologist):

Poisonous mushrooms, in turn, are divided into groups depending on the degree of their danger to human health:

  1. Deadly poisonous: characterized by a pronounced plasmotoxic effect, because The following toxic compounds have in their composition: phalloidin, phalloin, phallocin, phallisin, amanitines, amanine, aurellanine, etc. These include: pale grebe, fringed galerine, fly agaric smelly, plush cobweb.
  2. Mushrooms that act on the nerve centers: they necessarily contain muscarine, muscaridin and other toxins with neurotropic effects. This group includes: fibrils, whitewashed talker, fly agaric panther, fly agaric lemon, mycena pink, etc. The effect of toxins is not fatal.
  3. Mushrooms with a local stimulating effect: the group includes the vast majority of species, when consumed in food, there is a slight poisoning with gastrointestinal disorders. Among them: mushroom sulfur-yellow false, mushroom brick-red false, row of toads, etc. Poisoning with mushrooms belonging to this group is extremely rare.

There is another classification according to which mushrooms are:

  1. Tubular: these include those species whose lower side of the cap resembles a finely porous sponge.
  2. N lamellar: their inner (lower) side of the cap consists of thin plates.

In a separate group there are truffles and morels, which are also called “snowdrop” mushrooms. Morels learned this name due to the fact that they appear in the forests at the end of winter, along with the first forest flowers.

Soil fungi are not of interest to mushroom pickers, because are microscopic organisms.

Edible varieties

A variety of mushrooms, suitable for consumption in fresh and dried form, is amazing. The most popular are boletus (white), chanterelles, oyster mushrooms, butterflies, honey agarics, boletus, thrush and mushrooms. They are popular for their excellent taste. All of them are often found in Russia. Less often come across tethers, shimiji, cockerel, royal oyster (white steppe), Aleuria orange, agaricus (a parasite living on the trunks of Siberian or Daurian larch), volvarilla, mother-in-law's tongue, undergrowth (podorechik), royal spruce forests (spruce coniferous), rain (grandfather or grandfather tobacco), green flywheel (strainer), orange tremor, pink varnish and deer horns. A special attention of mushroom pickers is attracted by a group of mushrooms that are original in appearance, the so-called Reindeer Horns (coral-like blackberries, scallops or goat leg). Their fruit bodies resemble coral in structure. They do not have a poisonous double.


Cep (boletus) is the most popular member of the mushroom family. Due to its taste, it is considered the most valuable forest gift. On the thick leg is a massive porous hat on the underside, covered with smooth skin. There are white, cream and light brown varieties, less often there are boletus, the cap of which is painted in dark brown: this distinctive feature is due to the region of growth. The structure of the hymenophore is tubular. The pulp is white or cream. The color at the cut point does not change. There is a light nutty flavor.

Depending on the type of forest in which boletus grows, there are birch, pine and oak varieties. Each of them has excellent taste and is used in cooking.

Oyster mushrooms

A feature of oyster mushrooms is that they grow on trees and are considered tree-destroying mushrooms. Although most representatives of the mushroom kingdom, growing on trees, belong to the conditionally edible variety, oyster mushrooms are edible. The colony organism is a large number of thin flat-shaped hats that are arranged in rows one above the other. The peel covering the hats that look like small saucers is painted gray. The peculiarity is that they are easy to grow at home. They will not grow on earth, because are not saprophytes, and even more so - mycorrhiza forming. The substrate for them is prepared from wood and other components, or tree stumps are used. At the break, the color of the fruiting body remains unchanged.

To give oyster mushrooms a crop, create conditions that are as similar as possible to the natural habitat.


The flakes taste good

The flakes are white and pink. The pink variety is called rubella. The hat is concave in the center, the edges are slightly bent outward. The diameter of the rounded hat, covered with a thin skin, is 6-8 cm. The fruit body has a pleasant taste and a faint resinous smell. White caustic milky juice appears on the cut. A trevushka grows in forests and glades, loves moss.


Chanterelles were named because of the bright yellow or gold color. On a leg of cylindrical shape, which is slightly thicker on top than on the bottom, there is a hat with a slightly depressed middle. The shape of the hat is irregular, the edges are uneven and wavy. In nature, there are white chanterelles, but they are rare.

Irina Selyutina (Biologist):

White chanterelle, or l. pale, or l. the bright one is characterized by the presence in young specimens of smooth, bending downward edges of the cap. As the fruiting body grows, a winding edge begins to form, but the bend decreases. This species differs from the other representatives of the cantarells precisely in its coloring of the funnel-shaped hat - it is usually fawn yellow or white-yellow. Even with a surface examination, it becomes noticeable that the color is not uniform and resembles zonal spots located. White fox prefers deciduous forests, their areas where there is natural forest litter or there is moss and grass. The first fruiting bodies can be found in June. September ends the harvest season for the white chanterelle. According to the classification of edibility, the species of fox is pale belongs to 2 categories. According to its taste data, it is no different from ordinary (red) chanterelles.

It is not worth collecting chanterelles in coniferous forests - the specimens grown there usually taste bitter. The extract obtained from the fruiting body is used to get rid of helminths.


In nature, there are many types of oils, in particular m. Real, m. Cedar, m. Gray, m. White, m. Larch and m. Yellow-brown. The list of these varieties of tubular mushrooms can be continued further. They are all similar in appearance. Mushroom grows on sandy soils, chooses deciduous forests. On a flat hat, painted in a light brown color, there is a tubercle. The thin peel covered with the juice of the mucous structure is easily separated from the fruiting body. The leg is painted in cream color.


There are meadow, winter, summer and autumn varieties. They grow in groups. Find mushroom groups, "families" will be possible next to trees and stumps. On a thin leg, there is a tubular round hat. Oil in cream and light brown colors. The leg of the same color as the hat is decorated with a skirt.

Boletus (Redheads)

Boletus, or red-headed, should be sought, according to folk wisdom, next to aspen. A hat with a regular hemispherical shape is located on a thick and extended leg down. The hat is painted in cream, dark brown, less often in yellow. The leg, on which small dark scales are present, has a white color.


In the coniferous forests mushrooms grow. On a leg of cylindrical shape there is a concave hat resembling a funnel in shape. There is a coniferous smell that the fruit pulp absorbs from the resin secreted by coniferous crops. In large numbers, fruits grow in the Ukrainian city of Liman (until 2016, Krasny Liman, Donetsk Region).

Edible mushrooms

Conditionally edible varieties of mushrooms are less than edible. On the territory of Russia, the most common are milk mushrooms, greenfinchs (green parsley), morels, silver earrings (seruhi), certain types of truffles and russules, and some varieties of fly agaric. Riddles grow in clusters, sometimes form mushroom paths. Less common are otidea rabbit, pig (cow’s lip, pork ears), pink throat, fly agaric, pink-pink fly agaric (moose lip), “chicken” mushrooms (annular cap) or yellow polypore. The gray-pink fly agaric needs preliminary heat treatment at a temperature of at least 80 ° C in order to destroy the hemolitic rubescenslisin, which is part of it, and is dangerous for the body. This compound is capable of acting on blood cells - red blood cells and white blood cells destroy their cell membranes. This compound is capable of manifesting its ability when directly entering the blood.


Mushrooms must be soaked before use

In nature, the breasts are divided into yellow, white, and blue (gorny mushroom). They belong to lamellar varieties, have a recess in the center of the cap. The color of the hat varies depending on the variety. The taste is bitterness due to the presence of caustic milky juice. Before heat treatment, they are soaked in water.


Greenfinch stands out among other varieties with a pale green hats and legs. The edges of the cap are down, the leg is long and slightly curved. In the center of the cap there is a tubercle. The color remains unchanged even after heat treatment, which was the reason for a well-known popular name.


Morels have a thick leg; the hat has an unusual folded structure. Apothecia (fruit bodies) in morels is large, usually not less than 6-10 cm, fleshy, they clearly see a clear distinction between the stalk and the hat - by color. The hat can be either ovoid or conical in shape, necessarily with a network of longitudinal and transverse folds, often oblique. They form cells lined with hymenia (a spore-forming layer), but the ribs separating them remain sterile. The edges of the cap are fused with the hollow inside the leg.

Morels are subjected to prolonged heat treatment before use.

Inedible mushrooms

This category should be avoided. They cause death even when consumed in small quantities. The most dangerous are pale grebe, red fly agaric and satanic mushroom. Powerful hallucinogenic mushrooms include fly agaric, stroparia blue-green, paneolus bell-shaped. Less common are the pylorhynchis bear, goebeloma, variable pepper, fly agaric panther (panther), orange or orange-red cobweb, ordinary line (mushroom - “brain”), colorful trapezium (tinder fungus).

Differences between edible and inedible mushrooms

Going on a quiet hunt, you need to know the main differences between edible and inedible varieties:

  1. If at the break the mushrooms become blue, bright red or significantly change color, most likely, they belong to the group of poisonous.
  2. A pungent and unpleasant odor also indicates inedibility.
  3. Among all representatives of poisonous mushrooms, many have a skirt on the stem - the remainder of the private coverlet covering the spore-bearing layer. This symptom is not basic, this element is also present in a number of edible specimens.
  4. During the cooking of poisonous fruiting bodies, the water changes color, acquiring a blue or greenish tint. This is also inherent in some conditionally edible varieties due to the presence of hydrocyanic acid in their organisms, albeit in small quantities.
  5. On hats of edible varieties, in contrast to inedible varieties, specks are rarely present.
  6. The leg of poisonous mushrooms usually has at its base a well-defined tuberoid thickening and a peculiar sac surrounding it - a Volvo, the remainder of the common bedspread.
  7. Beasts and insects pass around poisonous mushrooms, because of which their hats and legs often remain intact all season.

Collect only the mushrooms you know

Put in the basket those copies that are familiar.

Unusual varieties

There are varieties with an unusual appearance. These include blue fungus, a bleeding tooth (the mushroom body is covered with drops of a red compound), trellised red fungus, bird's nest (mold fungus), lycoglass (wolf milk), comb blackberry, giant golovach, devil's cigar (Texas star). Some of them are found everywhere, others grow in certain countries.

Sometimes groups of mushrooms grow in the forests in the form of a circle, which is popularly called the “witch’s circle”. Previously, many associated this phenomenon with magic. Science, however, provided a logical explanation for this phenomenon. Sometimes the mycelium grows equally quickly in all directions. When the main fungus growing in the center dies, new ones grow along the edges of the mycelium, forming a circle and absorbing all nutrient compounds from the soil. As a result of this, it is formed, as it were, trampled underfoot by someone (and in the Middle Ages there was no doubt that there was no witch) in a place inaccessible to people, a circle with mushrooms growing along its edges (like an arena barrier).

Therapeutic Varieties

Ganoderma, maytake (Curly griffin) or mutton mushroom, Kombucha possess therapeutic properties. In oncology, red camphor mushroom is widely used, which is also called camphor anthrody. It grows in Taiwan and is the property of the country. It contains substances that eliminate tumors. It not only helps fight cancer, but also eliminates toxins.

Of interest to doctors is the exotic species of iiitake (Japanese mushroom). It can be grown in the garden or in the greenhouse. Japanese and Chinese doctors have long been aware of its healing properties. At home it is called the "elixir of youth" and is used to treat various diseases.

Muer black mushrooms growing on trees are also popular in the modern world. They are rarely found in Russia. Dried black fruit bodies are like charred paper. Their use in cooking does not differ from the preparation of forest mushrooms. Black mushrooms taste like seafood.

Red Book Mushrooms

In the Red Book listed hedgehog comb (grandfather's beard). The mushroom body consists of many thin and long processes hanging down. Shaggy hats grow on trees, they are painted white. After heat treatment, the dishes have a chicken flavor. This is not the only protected species. Under the ban for mushroom pickers are a girl’s Red Book umbrella, griffin umbrella, blue gyro porosus, Bruma melanogaster, chased mushroom, purple cobweb (fully colored in purple), pestle horned (with a hat that is missing from the outside, but has body parts intended for spore development), similar to a pestle), double net setoska, edible tinder sheep, trichia deceitful, fly agaric ovate. The girl’s umbrella on the hat has outgrowths, which makes it appear prickly, and the umbrella griffin consists of a large number of small fungi on thin winding legs attached to thicker common legs. It is painted white or light gray.

There are also varieties about which there is no exact data on edibility today, i.e. someone collects them and is glad, while someone cautiously passes by. These include a bright red sarcosciff. These small mushrooms are shaped like cups of saturated red color. The diameter of the bowl does not exceed 3 cm, which is why they do not cause interest in mushroom pickers. Appear in the forests in early spring.

The smallest mushroom in the world is a slime, and the largest grows in the United States and is called armillaria, or dark mushroom. Most of it is located underground (mycelium) and occupies about 900 hectares in the territory of the National Park "Malheur", which is located in eastern Oregon.


Грибы – это большое царство, объединяющее огромное разнообразие видов. Лесные дары– грибы, собирают осторожно, чтобы не положить в корзину ядовитых представителей группы. Появятся они после весенних дождей. Раньше отправляться в лес не стоит.


How to choose top dressing for the rapid growth of thuja
How to distinguish geese Linda from other birds
The best varieties of zucchini, or how to achieve the perfect harvest