Tuesday, November 17, 2009
These are big, heavy, stumpy mushrooms. They're not so pretty and rather awkward and yet, I find them rather endearing. This one was fruiting with some buddies in an ordinary lawn with a coast live oak (Quercus agrifolia) which happens to be one of the trees that this mushroom, Boletus amygdalinus, likes to spend time with. One of the many cool things about mushrooms is that some of them change color when bruised or cut. This one instantly turned deep blue. Tom Volk explains very nicely what makes boletes turn blue in an article about a different blueing bolete.
You might be wondering why I drew this mushroom upside down. Remember the big, heavy part? All attempts to keep it upright failed. It just kept tipping over. Without the earth to hold it upright this mushroom likes to stand on it's head.