Cultivation Tips

Spawning Mycelial Networks: The 2014 Radical Mycology North American Tour

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All photographs by Peter McCoy, unless noted

In August of 2014, members of the Radical Mycology Collective set out on a 3-month tour across North America to share their mycological knowledge with a over 40 different volunteer groups, non-profits, activist spaces, food justice centers, art collectives, and mycological societies. As self-educated mycologists, the tour members knew that mycology has historically been a study of the few and difficult to access for most people, despite the incredible insights and global resilience that comes from working with fungi. In collaboration with a variety of organizations, the Radical Mycology tour demonstrated that the art, science, and radical potential of working with fungi can significantly enhance all aspects of culture, politics, and life.

Aug. 15-19: Telluride, CO
Kicking off at the 34th annual Telluride Mushroom Festival in beautiful SW Colorado, the tour vibes started high with a warm reception by many of the event’s presenters and attendees. Among the many incredible presentations by mycologists and authors such as Robert Rogers, Tradd Cotter, and John Holliday, Rad Myco members Mara and Peter were honored to give a talk on the imperative of a community-centric approach to mycology during the 5 days of medicinal mushrooms, forays, and mycoremediation.


Post parade party at TMF

While Mara was at the TMF, only Peter was able to continue on down the road. So, in need of help with driving and keeping things real, TMF volunteer Adam was brought onboard the Dolphin (aka Dolphie) to help hold the reigns and roadie the next 10 days through the Southwestern US.

Aug. 23: Denver, CO
     From the high mountains of Telluride, the tour set out for Denver’s Living Systems Institute, an urban teaching center that works to “increase resilience by nurturing healthy relationships, creating repeating interactions, among the things in our range of influence, our habitat.” Here, the tour was joined for the evening by James Weiser of Amateur Mycology, a brilliant self-taught mycologist who shared a wealth of his incredible insights into the fungal kingdom with the crowd.

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New Mexico

Aug. 22-23: Santa Fe & Albuquerque, NM
     Next up were the arid hills outside Santa Fe, New Mexico, where the tour collaborated on a workshop with the Ampersand Sustainable Learning Center, an off the grid facility focused on developing sustainable living systems for desert climates.

Our whole approach to sustainability is about your relationship with your resources.  We start with  the basics: water, food, shelter, and energy.  We are simply gathering, experimenting with, and demonstrating sustainable solutions for living in harmony with our bioregion.

The topic was Mushroom Cultivation for Dryland Environments and the room was packed with folks excited to learn novel means for easily growing mycelium for food and medicine and the best design principles for creating water-scarce mushroom installations. The following day, the wonderful people at La Abeja Herbs hosted two workshops in Albuquerque to a room packed with folks from across the city.

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Solar dehydrator at Ampersand

Aug 25: San Antonio, TX
     Into thick high summer swelter of San Antonio, TX the Dolphie descended for a stop at the SW Worker’s Union.

The Southwest Workers’ Union is an organization of low-income workers and families, community residents, and youth, united in one organizational struggle for worker rights, environmental justice and community empowerment.

Here the discussion focused on mycoremediation strategies in collaboration with local activists working to address the significant pollution issues in the city’s abandoned military sites. The following day, Adam said his farewell as Peter rolled on east to pick up collective member Willoughby en route to New Orleans.

Aug. 27: New Orleans, LA
     Compared to the abundance of permaculture-inspired organizations and projects in Cascadia, permaculture as a practice is still getting established in the Big Easy. One of the most active permaculture groups in the city is The Urban Farmstead, which hosted the next tour stop’s 4-hour presentation on the numerous ways that fungi readily integrate into permaculture design systems. Folks in the crowd were especially excited about the skills that were shared, and as the conversations dispersed at the end of the night, we got the first taste of the excitement and sadness that comes with briefly meeting a crowd of like-minded mycophiles only to be swept away the following day onto the road of many miles.


Willoughby and Peter being interviewed at WTUL in New Orleans


Coprinus radicans, the orange fuzz is its ozonium, a dense mat of mycelium!
Credit: Willoughby Arevalo

Aug. 29-30: Tallahassee and Gainesville, FL
     Skimming the bayous and inlets of the Gulf Coast, the Dolphie chugged along Interstate 10, toward a packed auditorium at the local college in Tallahassee, Florida. Here the host was the Florida Native Plant Society, whose members were thrilled to learn about Radical Mycology’s perspective on the ecological significance of plant and fungal communities. The mycological diversity in Florida was incredible, yet to our surprise we learned that there was no mycological society in the whole state! After the talk, many crowd members self organized to continue their education as the merch table got swamped. The next day our local fungophile homie, Tim, brought Willoughby out for an early morning foray, complete with stinkhorns, giant spiders and a dead armadillo.

As we set out the next morning for Gainesville, an attendee from the night before got in touch to offer us over 300 blank shirts for screenprinting. The generous donor had noticed that we had sold out of shirts the night before and wanted to give us this donation to help fuel the efforts. SO! COOL!

That eve’s stop was at Gainesville’s Civic Media Center, a radical infoshop and community meeting space. Some of the diverse audience members had even travelled for hours to hear about the work of Radical Mycology. Needless to say, we were honored by the substrate of kindness that Florida left us growing on.

Mellow Mush

Mellow, Credit: Anonymous

Aug. 31-Sept. 1: Atlanta, GA
     A late night drive through torrential rains brought us to Atlanta to hold a dual workshop organized by the Mushroom Club of Georgia, 5th Kingdom Mushrooms, and the West Atlanta Watershed Alliance (WAWA). The first workshop focused on mycopermaculture and was followed by the installation of a King Stropharia mother bed at the Urban Garden Resiliency Oasis (an urban gardening education center in West Atlanta), which will eventually grow to provide spawn to gardeners throughout the neighborhood.

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King Stropharia mother patch installation at UGRO

The next day’s workshop was an ecologically-focused foray at the 26 acre Bush Mountain Nature Reserve, urban Atlanta’s largest old-growth forest, which is stewarded by WAWA.

[WAWA] is a community-based non-profit organization whose mission is to improve the quality of life within the West Atlanta Watershed by protecting, preserving and restoring our community’s natural resources. WAWA represents African American neighborhoods in Northwest and Southwest Atlanta that are most inundated with environmental stressors, but are least represented at environmental decision-making tables.

The myco-diversity was incredible in the protected watershed area; we only made it 100 feet in 3 hours! In the down time between workshops, we visited two urban farms: WAWA’s Board Treasurer Imran’s permaculture farm and 5th Kingdom, Atlanta’s gourmet mushroom farm which provides Imran with spent spawn to help build topsoil at his farm.

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Mycelium Raging 10706806_1493216114298312_1584759522_n

Stinky Squid, Pseudocolus fusiformis

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5th Kingdom Mushrooms

Sept. 2-3: Asheville, NC
     Creeping over the Blue Ridge Mountains, the Dolphin came to the incredibly friendly and myco-literate town of Asheville, NC. Starting in the morning with an eco-focused foray, the first night in town wrapped up with a packed room at Warren Wilson College for the tour’s central talk, Radical Mycology: Spawing Mycelial Networks. The host, Dana, was gearing up to implement numerous mycelial applications on campus: to transform cafe waste into food, to filter runoff from the campus’ composting facility, and to inoculate beetle-killed trees with local hemlock reishi. So cool.

The next night’s mycopermaculture talk was held at The Landing, an urban community focused on education and performing arts. The Landing’s resident mycologists AJ and Erica kept us up late that night with next-level cultivation conversations, while Peter cooked up liquid culture media. Before leaving town, we got a behind the scenes tour of Mushroom Central, Asheville’s fungal supply hub, spawn producer and mushroom farm.

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Warren Wilson warming up


Mushroom Central

Sept. 5-6: Virginia & DC
Two quick stops brought the us to Harrisonburg, VA’s environmental justice student group E.A.R.T.H and Washington D.C.’s activist hub The Peace House before we continued on to Pennsylvania.

Sept. 7: Media & Philadelphia, PA
Here, in Media, we started to feel the fullness of the tour’s itinerary as we landed in a packed room with members of Transition Town Media seeking to learn about mushroom identification from Peter while Willoughby played with the under-12 crowd to Put the Fun in Fungi.

Transition Town Media is a community based initiative focused on building community resilience in the face of global economic and environmental challenges that are impacting many in the Media area.

Soon after, Willoughby led an info-packed ecologically-focused foray to a rapt audience before we dashed across town to set up for an evening performance at the historic Sedgwick Theater. There, Willoughby performed his intriguingly unique music performance-cum-pedagogy, The Sex Life of Mushrooms. 

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Ecologically focused

Sept. 8: New York City, NY
     Only in the Big Apple for one day, we decided to skip the tourist game and hold down two workshops instead. The first was at La Casita Verde, a community garden in Brooklyn, with art and technology teacher Marina Zurkow, as a part of her graduate program at New York University, the Interactive Telecommunications Program. From there we headed to a packed room at the Manhattan’s Museum of Reclaimed Urban Space (MORUS) to hold a talk on the intersections of mycology, guerilla gardening, the Occupy movement, and squatters rights.

The Museum of Reclaimed Urban Space in New York City seeks to preserve, research, archive, and exhibit the historical squats and gardens of Manhattan’s Lower East side. 

     That night Peter showed Willoughby his old dumpster diving grounds where, when volunteering with the New York Freegans, Peter used to demonstrate to news crews and crowds from around the world the incredible amount of waste, pollution, and viable food that is sent to the curb every night by businesses across the city. We hit it big, salvaging among other things, over a gallon of dried mushrooms.



Sept. 9: Beacon, NY
Traveling up the Hudson River, the tour landed the next evening at the sustainable living and ecological design teaching center node.

node exists to adjust the conventional ecological dialog. In response to the modern climax ecology that has rendered lack of transparency, empowerment inequalities, and unrealized public benefit around environment, node provides an education and resources exchange platform that facilitates exploratory adaptive design aesthetically represented.

Even though the Radical Mycopermaculture workshop was the 2nd event node had hosted, the room was packed with mycophiles from across the region. Capping off the workshop, everyone made an oyster kit using fermented straw. And afterward, the majority of the crowd organized a group to pursue future cultivation projects!

Sept. 11-14: Western MA
Picking up Radical Mycology co-founder Maya in Massachusetts, the 3 of us travelled to Great Barrington to hold a lecture at the local library, where attendees brought boxes of tomatoes, chicken of the woods and jars of sauerkraut to share. The following weekend, Fungi Ally in Amherst hosted a 2-day Mushroom Cultivation & Application Course, which concluded with an edible mushroom path and a two-species, two-tiered, remediative bed designed to filter affluent from the property’s septic system. Attendants traveled from far and wide, one coming all the way from Ivory Coast!


 Willie Crosby, Owner of Fungi Ally


Remediative 2-tiered mushroom terrace installation at Fungi Ally

Sept. 15 – 16: Boston & Maine
Saying goodbye to new (and old) friends and fellow cultivators, the tour continued to Boston to present a cultivation workshop and a mycology for kids teacher training at Green City Growers, an organization focused on transforming vacant lots into urban farms. For our last stop on the east coast, we went to rural Maine for a Radical Mycopermaculture workshop and outdoor bed installation at a private homestead. The Mainers picked up what we were spawning down and were inspired to start their own mycological activist group, The Mycowrench Gang.




Sept. 17: Montreal, QC
After spotting chaga from the road on a long backcountry drive and making a quick border crossing, the island city of Montreal welcomed the crew with fresh poutine and a room packed for 4 back-to-back workshops at Santropol Roulant, the city’s 20-year old food justice center.

Santropol Roulant uses food as a vehicle to break social and economic isolation between generations and cultures. Creatively and collaboratively, we strengthen and nourish our local community with our novel approaches to active youth engagement, urban food systems, food security and community care.

After leading workshops on cultivation, medicinal mushrooms, mimicking mycelium in social design, and fungal sexuality, we were swept off our feet for several days by our generous and myco-knowledgable hosts, some of whom had recently started Mycollectif, a mushroom cultivation and mycoremediation collective at Santropol Roulant. The group’s current project is to determine remediation strategies for a large city park polluted with heavy metals due to serving for years as a railyard. Among their members is the brilliant local mycologist Geoffroy of Champignons Maison.


Sex Life of Mushrooms

10706751_1491560074433299_2096025769_nCoprinus comatus, Montreal

1390379_291746707698070_1243385232_n Resinous Polypore (Ischnoderma resinosum)


Geoffroy’s Lab


The potent medicinal mushroom, Reishi (Ganoderma lucidum), grown on 95% coffee grounds

Sept. 21: Toronto, ON

The next stop was at, well, The Stop, Toronto’s community food center.

The Stop strives to increase access to healthy food in a manner that maintains dignity, builds health and community, and challenges inequality.

Only able to present for the afternoon, the Radical Mycology workshop was well attended with many attendees excited to learn more and add a fungal component to The Stop’s gardening and composting projects.


Niagara Falls, now its definitely a tour

Sept. 23: Rochester, NY
Crossing back stateside, the next two standing room only workshops were held at the beautifully hip mushroom farm and storefront, Smugtown Mushrooms. Our wonderful host, Olga, showed us some of the town’s more famous & secret maitake motherlodes, including a 4 a.m. foray where we saw the glow of wild Panellus stipticus. So cool.


Local Rochester Reishi strain fruiting at Smugtown Mushrooms




Phellinus gilvus, Credit: Willoughby Arevalo

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Birch Polypore (Piptoporus betulinus)


Maitake (Grifola frondosa)


Lion’s Mane (Hericium erinaceus) Credit: Willoughby Arevalo

Sept. 25: Detroit, MI
Another long day’s drive brought the tour to the heart of Detroit to align with Earthworks Urban Farm, a 15-year old urban faming initiative with a mission to “restore our connection to the environment and community…It is a working study in social justice, as well as in being more connected to the food we eat.”

Here we taught local farmers how to grow mushrooms off their annual crop wastes for increased productivity and economic security. This was the first mushroom focused workshop in Earthworks’ history and they were excited to incorporate the Oysters-On-Coffee-Cardboard-And-Fermented-Straw techniques covered into future curricula.

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Earthworks Urban Farm

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Oyster grains to wet cardboard and fermented straw burritos

Sept. 27-29: Traverse City & Kalamazoo, MI
Radical Mycology Collective member Mara did her share of tour organizing but was unable to travel with the tour, so she brought it to her town. The Grand Traverse Mycological Society and Carter’s Compost helped host a 2-day Mushroom Cultivation & Application Course in Traverse City. The install, at Carter’s, established a Pearl Oyster mother bed as a part of the compost initiative designed and run by a 9 year old!

In Kalamazoo, we held a remediation focused talk with local activists in relation to the three oil spills that had occurred in the area in recent years.

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A 9 year old did this!

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Sept. 30: Chicago, IL & the 2014 Radical Mycology Convergence
     The next day brought us to Chicago’s urban farm and education center, Earnest Earth, for a mycopermaculture presentation. That evening followed up with another presentation at the city’s maker space, CivicLab.

From here the Dolphin finned its way to rural Illinois to set up camp for nearly 2 weeks in preparation for the 3rd Radical Mycology Convergence. The RMC was a blast (!!!) and a reportback from it can be read here.


Maya on Mycopermaculture

Morning Circle

Morning circle at the RMC, Credit: Arthur Lee


Lichen Dyes with Shay, Credit: Arthur Lee


Collections at the RMC, Credit: Arthur Lee

Oct. 17-21: Minneapolis, MN & Bozeman, MT
Saying “see you in 3 weeks” to Maya and “see you in 2 weeks” to Willoughby, Peter left across the north plains for two standing-room only workshops in Minneapolis with Twin Cities Permaculture and two packed living room workshops in Bozeman hosted by the wonderful folks at Mountain Mycoworks and Broken Ground.



Oct. 27: Seattle, WA
Skipping across the Puget Sound to Vashon Island to cover mushroom ID and cultivation with the local Grower’s Association in the afternoon, Peter jumped back to the mainland that evening to present with the Seattle Farmer’s Co-Op in the city center. Afterwords, Peter was interviewed by Sara Bernhard for this great article in Grist Magazine.



Oct. 28: Olympia, WA
Returning to Radical Mycology’s hometown, the workshop here was held at the New Moon Cooperative Café, owned and operated by members of the Black Moon Collective, an organization working to support the development of cooperative businesses in Olympia.

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Hericium hand

Oct. 29: Portland, OR
Willoughby rejoined the tour in Peter’s hometown for the final tour stretch and a workshop at Tryon Life Community Farm, a land project and non-profit focused on community-based sustainability and social change. Prior to the talk, roughly 20 volunteers joined a work party to help perform upkeep on a Mushroom Labyrinth designed and initiated months earlier by Peter and others, including Mushroom Jordan who joined in on that night’s packed-yurt presentation.



Turkey Tail (Trametes versicolor) and nettles (Urtica dioica), a beautiful medicinal combo


On the mycelial path

Oct. 31 & Nov. 1: Southern Oregon
For Samhain (Halloween), the tour stopped at the Nomenus Wolf Creek Sanctuary to give a special talk on the relationship between fungi, death, and decomposition.

Founded in 1987, Nomenus is a nonprofit religious organization whose mission is to create, preserve and manage places of spiritual and cultural sanctuary for Radical Faeries and their friends to gather in harmony with nature for renewal, growth, and shared learning. Nomenus serves a regional and national community by stewarding Wolf Creek Sanctuary as a sacred space dedicated to queer liberation and spiritual growth, and to its founding intention as a sanctuary for Radical Faerie culture and faggot spirituality.

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Trametes versicolor

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Anise Mushroom (Clitocybe oroda)

The next day, one of the tour’s financial supporters brought us out through the mountains to Klamath Falls for a cultivation workshop at a private residence, bringing together local permaculturalists, homesteaders, and horticulturalists.

Nov. 3-4: Humboldt County, CA
Her, the tour was warmly welcomed by Willoughby’s home community, where we went big with three events in two days. We began at The Sanctuary in Arcata with an experimental mycoremediation installation (with spawn donated by local mushroom farm Mycality Mushrooms), using test plots with Pleurotus ostreatus, mycorrhizal inoculant, both, and a control to try to degrade chemical herbicide and fertilizer in the soil.

The Sanctuary is dedicated to creative growth through the arts, encouraging people to teach, inspire and know each other. 

Arcata Install

Arcata Install2

The next day, Willoughby led a foray at Big Lagoon, a veritable ectomycorrhizal garden. There were too many mushrooms to talk about to be able to make a species list. As darkness set in, we went to visit Sierra Madre Mushrooms, one of the largest distributors of wild mushrooms in North America. Willoughby has been friends with the owner for years, since getting caught dumpster diving in their compost bins. There, Peter saw more mushrooms than he had ever seen in his life, and Trent sent us home with a basket full of mushrooms to clone. Very little sleep was had that night, as we set up the flow hood at Willoughby’s dad’s house, and tissue cultured 19 strains of mushrooms, while eating 24 species, including some from that day’s harvest.


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Long nights, old story



Nov. 5-8: The Bay Area
Winding down the 101 to the final days of the tour, an evening session was held at the Sebastopol Grange followed by an afternoon presentation on fungi and urban resilience at Oakland’s A PLACE for Sustainable Living.

[PLACE is] a public-serving, experiential learning center to showcase and foster sustainable living practices, urban homesteading, community resiliency & preparedness, social justice and artistic expression.

The next day Willoughby led a foray in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park before the two rejoined Maya in Santa Cruz where she led a foray on the UC Santa Cruz campus.

Will Hunt

     Whew! After 13,000 miles, hundreds of photos, thousands of mushrooms, and the formation of countless new friendships, the touring mycos returned to their homes along the west coast to hibernate for winter and reflect on the lessons of the tour’s breadth. Bringing accessible mycological knowledge and skills to a wide range of demographics, the 2014 Radical Mycology Tour highlighted the rising excitement and desire for access to open-source mycology growing across North America and the important role that Radical Mycology plays in the spawning of this grassroots mycological movement.

Following on the strong interest of many tour participants to form local Radical Mycology-inspired groups, the Radical Mycology Collective is now building the infrastructure and information databases to help further develop this movement. Stay tuned to and join our email list for more information on how to start a group in your area and connect with others around the world. The spores have been cast.


     A big THANK YOU goes out to the many supporters of the Radical Mycology Book Indiegogo campaign, who all helped make this tour possible. And a second big THANK YOU to all the organizations, volunteers, hosts, and event attendees that helped make the 2014 Radical Mycology Tour such an inspiring and empowering success. We look forward to seeing you all again!

Mush Love,
The Radical Mycology Collective


Post Script: Radical Mycology Tour Species Lists

On this tour I worked hard–and sometimes with the help of locals–to ID as many mushrooms as possible, despite a shortage of time to really get down and dirty with keys and cross-referencing. Microscopy did not happen. Spore prints were infrequent. Most of these IDs are based purely on field characters without any follow up work, so take it with a grain of salt. When I encountered multiple unidentified members of a particular genus unless I am including any additional notes about their features, I add another “p” to the “sp” (i.e. Cortinarius spppp means I encountered 4 different Cortinarius species). Unfortunately, I did not manage to make lists for all of the forays. Notably Big Lagoon, CA and San Francisco, CA were sorely missed lists. Of course we encountered many mushrooms here and there, when we weren’t even looking (ok, actually I was always looking). The Beaver Pond in Conway, Massachusetts showed the greatest diversity, thanks in part to Maya and I teaming up on that one. However, Big Lagoon may have surpassed it, had I kept track. Turkey tail was the mushroom encountered in the most localities: 9 out of 14 sites with lists. Violet tooth polypore and Artist’s conk also showed up in more than half of the sites. Many of these mushrooms I had never before met in person, but only read about them and seen pictures. It was a joy to make some new friends. Particularly exciting new encounters were the various stinkhorns, maitake, and white jelly fungus.


City Park, New Orleans, LA, 8/27/14

(12 taxa)
Conocybe sp
Amanita vaginata group (tiny) (Grisette)
Discomycete sp (convex cup, peachy)
Trametes sp
Coprinus domesticus or C. Radians (arising from an ozonium)
Schizophyllum commune (Split Gill Fungus)
Hypoxylon sp
Ganoderma applanatum (Artist’s Conk)
Auricularia sp (Wood Ear)
Daldina concentrica (Cramp Balls)
Phellinus sp
Mutinus caninus “Dog Stinkhorn”


Tom Brown Park, Tallahassee, FL 8/30/14

(43 taxa…thanks Tim for help with these)
Lentinus sp
Lentinus crinitis
Mycena sppp
Usnea sp
Permelia sp (cup lichen)
Stereum complicatum
Stereum ostrea
Marasmius spp
Cantharellus cibarius (Chanterelle)
Xerocomus rubrocitrina
Xylaria sp
Coprinellus sp white
Auricularia auricula (Wood Ear)
Daedalopsis ambigua
Polyoporus tenuiculus
Pleurotus ostreatus (Pearl Oyster)
Russula fragrantissima group (Fetid Russula)
Boletus pallidus
Cerrena unicolor
Russula sp (virescens?)
Lactarius tomento-marginatus
Cantharellus cinnibarinus (Cinnibar Chanterelle)
Amanita sp
Coltricia sp
Amanita abrupta
Trichaptum biforme (Violet Tooth Polypore)
Marasmiellus sp
Tremella sp (Witch’s Butter)
Gymnopus iocephalus
Tremella fuciformis (Snow Fungus/White Jelly Fungus)
Baeospora sp (on pine cone)
Trametes versicolor (Turkey Tail)
Ganoderma lucidum (Reishi)
Phallus ravenelli (Ravenell’s Stinkhorn)
Gloeophyllum striatum
Macrocybe titans
Scleroderma sp (Earthball)
Hydnochaete olivaceum
Nigroporus vinous
Grey headed slime mold


Wood Ear (Aricularia spp.), Credit: Willoughby Arevalo

Outdoor Activity Center, Bush Mountain, Atlanta, GA 9/1/14

(31 taxa)
Polyporus sp
Boletus sp (red pores blue stain)
Cantharellus lateritius/appalachensis (Smooth Chanterelle)
Armillaria sp (Honey Mushroom/Bootlace Fungus) (rhizomorphs)
Lycogala epidendrum (Wolf’s Milk slime mold)
Pseudocolus fusiformis (Stinky Squid)
Mycena spp
Marasmus sp
Trametes versicolor (Turkey Tail)
Lenzites betulina (Gilled Polypore)
Stereum complicatum
Calostroma sp (Red Slimy-Stalked Puffball)
Panellus sp
Hypoxylon sp
Amanita bisporigera
Xylaria sp (on sweetgum seed ball)
Boletus sp (red cap, yellow pores,blue stain, small)
Hypomyces chrysospermum (Bolete Eater)
Trichaptum biforme (Violet Tooth Polypore)
Russula fragrantissima group (Fetid Russula)
Russula sp (tiny pink)
Stereum ostrea
Ramaria sp
Russia sp (emetica?)
Cantharellus cibarius (Chanterelle)
Lycoperdon sp (Puffball)
Tylopilus sp (Green cap, brown stain)
Boletus sp
Hapaloporus nidulans
Phaeolus schweinitzii (Dyer’s Polypore)


Warren Wilson College – trail by church, Asheville, NC 9/2/14

(25 taxa)
Stereum ostrea
Stereum complicatum
Trichaptum biforme (Violet Tooth Polypore)
Pluteus cervinus (Deer Mushroom)
Gloeophyllum sepiarium (Rusty Gilled Polypore)
Tyromyces sp (Cheese Polypore)
Marasmius sp (magnosporus?)
Marasmius sp
Ganoderma applanatum (Artist’s Conk)
Armillaria sp (Honey Mushroom)
Climacodon septentrionale
Schizophyllum commune (Split Gill Fungus)
Trametes versicolor (Turkey Tail)
Collybia sp
Amanita sp (fibrillose, ring less, blushing)
Tremella sp (Witch’s Butter)
Scleroderma sp  (Earthball)
Russula sp (mariae?)
Cantharellus appalachensis/lateritius (Smooth Chanterelle)
Ramaria sp
Hypoxylon sp
Panellus stipticus (Glow in the Dark)
Trametes sp.
Hymenochetae sp.


Mystery mushroom. Any ideas? Contact willoughbyarevalo [at] hotmail [dot] com

Washington, D.C. Streets, Landscaping etc 9/6/14

(10 taxa)
Nidularia sp (Bird’s Nest Fungus)
Conocybe sp
Stereum sp
Panaeolus sp
Mutinus caninus (Dog Stinkhorn)
Pleurotus sp (Oyster)
Phellinus spp
Geastrum sp (Earthstar)
Ganoderma lucidum (Reishi) on ornamental plum roots


Rose Tree Park, Media, PA, 9/7/14

(18 taxa)
Crepidotus spp
Trichaptum biforme (Violet Tooth Polypore)
Trametes versicolor (Turkey Tail)
Ciboria sp
Russula sp
Piptoporus betulinus (Birch Polypore)
Stereum sp
Scutellaria sp (Eyelash Cup)
Amanita sp
Cortinarius sp
Climacodon septentrionale
Armillaria sp (Honey Mushroom/Bootlace Fungus) (rhizomorphs)
Daldina concentrica (Cramp Balls)
Orange cluster (?)
Ganoderma applanatum (Artist’s Conk)
Phellinus sp
Pluteus cervinus (Deer Mushroom)

On and around Maya’s Family’s Place, Conway, Massachusetts, 9/10/14

(27 taxa)
Chlorociboria aeriginosa (Green Stain Cup)
Hypomyces lactiflorum (Lobster Mushroom)
Amanita sp (yellow) (Grisette)
Hypomyces chrysospermum (Bolete Eater)
Trichaptum biforme (Violet Tooth Polypore)
Stereum complicatum
Bjerkandera adusta (Smoky Polypore)
Trametes versicolor (Turkey Tail)
Scleroderma sp (Earthball)
Ganoderma applanatum (Artist’s Conk) (huge!)
Amanita rubescens (Blusher)
Suillus sppp
Clitocybe sp
Russula sppp
Amanita phalloides (Death Cap)
Trametes sp
Cortinarius sp
Boletus sp
Fuligo septica (Vomited Scrambled Egg Slime Mold)
Fomes fomentarius (Amadou/Tinder Conk/Iceman Polypore)
Inonotus obliquus (Chaga)
Laccaria sp
Piptoporus betulinus (Birch Polypore)

Beaver Pond, Conway, Massachusetts, 9/12/14

(53 taxa)
Fomes fomentarius (Amadou/Tinder Conk/Iceman Polypore)
Lactarius camphoratus (Candy Cap)
Russula sp vinosa?
Phellodon sp (side by side with):
Hydnellum concrescens
Trametes versicolor (Turkey Tail)
Cortinarius spppppp
Ganoderma applanatum (Artist’s Conk)
Russula sp
Craterellus fallax (Black Trumpet/Horn of Plenty)
Cryptotrama asprata
Russula sp (emetica?)
Chlorociboria sp “green stain” (rot)
Hebeloma sp (Corpse Finder)
Stereum sp
Armillaria sp (Honey Mushroom)
Amanita vaginata group (Grisette)
Leccinum sp?
Tylopilus eximus
Lycoperdon sp (Puffball)
Craterellus ignicolor (Yellow Foot/Winter Chanterelle)
Hygrocybe sp (Waxy Cap)
Hydnum umbilicatum (Bellybutton Hedgehog)
Hypomyces luteovirens
Hypomyces chrysospermum (Bolete Eater)
Marasmius sp
Panellus stipticus (Glow in the Dark)
Suillus lakei (Painted Suillus)
Lactarius subvellereus var subdistans?
Suillus sp (glandular dots on stalk)
Amanita fulva (Tawny Grisette)
Amanita phalloides (Death Cap)
Clitocybe sp
Clitopilus prunulus (Sweetbread Mushroom)
Pluteus cervinus (Deer Mushroom)
Clavulina cinereus (Ashy Coral Mushroom) (with its parasite):
Helminthosphaeria clavariarum
Ciboria sp (yellow)
Yellow wrinkled granular veil-less wood rotting agaric (?)
Lactarius sp
Mycena sp
Suillus sp (painted w/ cortina)
Xerocomus sp
Tricholomopsis rutilans (Clums and Custard)
Ganoderma tsugae (Hemlock Reishi)
Tricholoma sp (flavovirens?)
Psathyrella sp
Phylloporus leucomycelinus


Fungi Ally Farm, Amherst, Massachusetts, 9/12-14/14

(4 taxa)
Unidentified LBM coming out of a sclerotium
Lentinula edodes (Shiitake)
Hericium erinaceus (Lion’s Mane)
Boletus subglabripes


Mont Royal, Montreal, QC, Canada, 9/19/14

(23 taxa)
Ganoderma applanatum (Artist’s Conk)
Daedalopsis confragosa (Thin-Walled Maze Polypore
Schizophyllum commune (Split Gill Fungus)
Cerrena unicolor
Fomes fomentarius (Amadou/Tinder Conk/Iceman Polypore)
Russula sp
Laccaria sp
Cortinarius sp
Chalciporus sp (Peppery Bolete)
Hericium erinaceus (Lion’s Mane) (on paper birch)
Phellinus spp
Volvariella bombycina? (primordium)
Lycoperdon sp (Puffball)
Tyromyces caesius (Blue Cheese Polypore)
Suillus sp
Polyporus squamosus (Dryad’s Saddle)
Stereum sp
Hypoxylon sp
Pluteus cervinus (Deer Mushroom)
Crepidotus sp
Trametes versicolor (Turkey Tail)
Condomyces flaccidus (no relation to the phalloid fungi;) (Used Condom)
Coprinus comatus (Shaggy Mane)
Ischnoderma resinosum (Resinous Polypore)

Rochester, NY, 9/23/14

Genesse Valley Park:

(6 taxa)
Ganoderma lucidum (Reishi)
Chalciporus piperatus (Peppery Bolete)
Inocybe sp (Fiber Head)
Bondarzewia berkeleyii (Berkeley’s (Polypore)
Grifola frondosa (Maitake/Hen of the Woods)
Amanita sp


Heartwood Forest:

(30 taxa)
Irpex lacteus (Milky Toothed Crust)
Panellus stipticus (Glow in the Dark)
Pholiota adiposa (Fat Pholiota)
Hericium coralloides (Coral Hericium)
Pleurotus ostreatus (Pearl Oyster)
Ganoderma applanatum (Artist’s Conk)
Armillaria sp (Honey Mushroom/Bootlace Fungus) (rhizomorphs)
Schizophyllum commune (Split Gill Fungus)
Lycoperdon sp (Puffball)
Ramaria sp (Coral Mushroom)
Phlebia sp (Dog Vomit Fungus)
Trichaptum biforme (Violet Tooth Polypore)
Stereum ostrea
Russula sp (white)
Stereum complicatum
Daedalopsis confragosa (Thin-Walled Maze Polypore)
Grifola frondosa (Maitake/Hen of the Woods)
Hypoxylon sp
Trametes versicolor (Turkey Tail)
Phellinus gilvus (Oak Conk)
Mycena sp (yellow)
Conocybe filaris (group) (Ringed Cone-Head)
Ciboria sp
Laetiporus sulphureus (Chicken of the Woods/Sulfur Shelf)
Stereum sp (white hymenophore)
Mycena sp
Cantharellus cinnibarinus (Cinnibar Chanterelle)
Xeromphalina sp
Hypsizygus ulmarius (Elm Oyster)
Daldina concentrica (Cramp Balls)


The Back Forty, Detroit, MI, 9/25/14

(4 taxa)
Ganoderma lucidum (Reishi)
Coprinellus sp
Psathyrella sp
Ganoderma sp


Nance’s Land, Freeport, IL

Radical Mycology Convergence Site

Oct 1-13, 2014

(32 taxa)
Hypsizygus ulmarius (Elm Oyster) (on box elder)
Polyporus squamosus (Dryad’s Saddle) (on box elder)
Suillus sp (under pines)
Trichaptum biforme (Violet Tooth Polypore) (on walnut)
Pleurotus ostreatus (Pearl Oyster)
Entoloma sp or Tricholoma sp? (near pines & walnuts)
Clitocybe spp (under pines)
Schizphyllum commune (Split Gill Fungus) (on walnut etc)
Auricularia sp (Wood Ear) (on walnut)
Ganoderma applanatum (Artist’s Conk)
Flammulina sp (Enoki/Velvet Shank) (on willow, walnut, on logs over creek)
Armillaria sp (Honey Mushroom) (under oaks on ground) and shoestring rhizomorphs (in fallen branches)
Mycena sp (yellow orange)
Trametes pubescens
Irpex lacteus (Milky Toothed Crust) (on walnut)
Calocybe cornea (Staghorn Jelly)
Hebeloma sp (Corpse Finder) (under spruces)
Mutinus caninus (Dog Stinkhorn) (in greenhouse)
Mycena sp (on railroad ties by driveway)
Mycena sp (beige)
Psathyrella sp (big clusters around base of oak)
Mycena sp (dainty grey)
Bovista plumbea (Tumbling Puffball)
Trametes hirsuta
Trichaptum biforme (Violet Tooth Polypore) (on walnut near driveway/bat barn)
Mycena sp (tiny, on walnut shell)
Galerina marginata (Deadly Galerina) (on rotten wood near kennel)
Cyathus sp (Bird’s Nest Fungus) (tall brown furry, on twig)
Calvatia gigantea (Giant Puffball)
Aleurodiscus oakesii (Popcorn Fungus)
Trametes versicolor (Turkey Tail) (on stump near big barn & on wooden stool in big barn)


UCSC campus, trail from North Remote Parking Lot, Santa Cruz, CA 11/8/14

(16 taxa)

Phaeolus schweinitzii (Dyer’s Polypore)
Trichaptum abietinum (Conifer Violet Tooth Polypore)
Poria sp (on madrone)
Entoloma sp
Hypoxylon sp
Mycena sp
Mycena sp (Bleach Mycena)
Russula sp
Rhizopogon sp
Pisolithus tinctorius (Dead Man’s Foot”
Scleroderma sp (Earthball)
Amanita sp (citrina?)
Hypomyces chrysospermum (Bolete Eater)
Stereum hirsuta (Hairy Parchment)
Tylopilus sp
Suillus caerulescens (Doug-Fir Suillus)

Dolphin Badlands


Radical Mycologist Trains Mushroom to Remediate Cigarette Butts


Cigarette filters are the most commonly littered waste product in the world. Last year, nearly 1.7 billion pounds of cigarette filters were thrown into the globe’s landfills and ecosystems. That’s roughly 4.5 trillion cigarette butts littered each year! In the US alone, an estimated 135 million pounds of cigarette butts are thrown away annually.

Cigarette filters are made from a type of plastic called cellulose acetate. As cellulose acetate does not readily biodegrade, cigarette litter can persist in the environment for 10-15 years or longer before it begins to break down. The filters that aren’t thrown into the streets and parks of the world find their way into landfills where they slowly leach toxic chemicals and heavy metals into ground water systems. Fortunately, fungi may provide a solution to this global issue.

As discussed in the Radical Mycology article, Fungi and The Plastics Problem, it has long been known that fungi can degrade various forms of plastic. However, a large-scale, real-world application of this ability has never been explored to any real depth. This may have been due to a variety of factors, one of which being that the chemical composition of many plastics is too complex for many fungi to readily digest. The plastic that composes cigarette filters, however, is of a rather simple composition and thus allows some common fungi to easily digest it.

Cellulose is the structural component in plant cell walls and is also one of the most accessible nutrient sources that fungi degrade in the natural world. Fungi use digestive enzymes to break down cellulose into simple sugars, which are then metabolized by the fungus. As the cellulose acetate that comprises cigarette filters is nothing more than a modified form of plant cellulose, it turns out that some fungi can break down this industrial plastic waste product.


Cellulose acetateCellulose-2D-skeletalCellulose

As Peter of the Radical Mycology project demonstrates in the video below, fungi can not only be trained to digest used cigarette filters but possibly the toxic chemicals that they harbor as well. The methodology Peter used to accomplish this goal was based on an understanding of the skills needed to “train” a fungus to digest a foreign substance. Simply put, the mushroom cultivator must slowly introduce a new food source to a fungus so that the fungus can first determine and then produce the correct enzymes necessary to digest the novel substrate. The same concepts that Peter introduces in this video can be applied to a range of toxins and industrial chemicals, such as petroleum products, dioxins, dyes, and munitions. This is a concept known as fungal remediation. In recent years, skills such as these were coveted techniques used by professional mycologists and bioremediation firms. However, as the global grassroots bioremediation community has continued to grow in the last few years, these techniques have become increasingly more available to the common cultivator.

Skills such as this will be explored in-depth in the Radical Mycology Book. If you would like to learn more advanced mycological skills for reducing your pollution impact and to help clean up the environment, please consider backing the Radical Mycology Book Indiegogo campaign.

How to Make Medicinal Mushroom Capsules

At $0.50 – $1.00 per pill, commercial medicinal mushroom capsules are prohibitively expensive for most people. This is rather unfortunate as the powerful abilities that these fungi have for increasing immunity, suppressing tumor growth, and healing the body are incredibly beneficial to most people. It is also remarkable when one discovers that the cost of actually producing these capsules can be as low as 5% of their retail cost. That’s a 95% markup!

Thankfully, there are means for one to make their own medicinal mushroom capsules at a fraction of the retail price. Making your own medicinal mushroom capsules is not only cheap and easy, it is also an empowering means to providing your own medicinal mushroom products for increased longevity.

In the short video below, Peter McCoy of the Radical Mycology project demonstrates a simple method of producing a large quantity of medicinal mushroom capsules using a minimum of equipment. In summary, one introduces mushroom mycelium into jars of sterilized brown rice. The mycelium is then allowed to grow on the rice for several weeks, at which point the resultant “myceliated brown rice” is dried and powdered. Myceliated brown rice is the main ingredient in many commercial medicinal mushroom capsules. The main differences between the capsules that Peter makes and the commercial products are as follows:

  1. Some of the higher quality commercial products include powdered whole mushrooms (their fruiting bodies) along with the mycelium. However, as Peter points out in the video, there are some medicinal mushrooms that can be fruited “in the jar,” thereby allowing one to still obtain the benefits of the fruiting bodies.
  2. Commercial products are freeze dried, not air dried. While freeze drying allows for a longer shelf life, it is not easily accomplished for the home medicine maker and herbalist (but cheap methods do exist). Air dried mycelium should be stored in the fridge and occasionally checked for quality.
  3. Some commercial products (but not necessarily all of them) utilize mushroom “strains” that have been tested and shown to contain higher than average quantities in their medicinal constituents. What this means is that the genetics of the mycelium you are working with–and the capsules it ultimately produces–may not contain as high of a concentration of medicinally active constituents as a commercial product would. While this can be true (just as plants can vary widely in their relative medicinal compound concentration), there are some ways to tackle this argument. One simple solution is to simply consume more capsules. Considering that they are quite inexpensive to produce and that there are no documented deaths associated with an overdose of medicinal mushroom capsules, this is an easy work around. Another perspective is the idea that if you are working with a mushroom that was harvested locally, the medicinal compounds that it produces might be of a more beneficial constitution than that of an imported variety. This is a commonly held belief in the world of plant herbalism: that the natural medicine that is most beneficial for a person can often be found in their own region of the world.

Ultimately, the home creation of medicinal mushroom products is a valuable skill for one to learn for self-sufficiency and resilient living strategies and can compete in quality with many expensive commercial products sold today.

This technique for integrating fungi into your everyday life, and many more like it, will be covered to an even greater depth in the Radical Mycology Book. If you would like to learn more mushroom-related skills like this for healing yourself and your community, please visit the Radical Mycology Book Fundraiser.

The cultivation videos referred to in this video can be viewed here.

Radical Mycology featured on Punk Rock Permaculture

Evan Shoepke at Punk Rock Permaculture recently did an interview with Peter from the Radical Mycology collective about the ways that working with the fungal kingdom can influence and inform the work of effective biomimicry and permaculture design. Check out the interview below and then stop by Evan’s site to check out the wealth of DIY & low-cost permaculture resources that he provides.

Radical Mycology featured in a book on DIY remediation

Radical Mycology co-founder Peter McCoy has co-authored a chapter on fungal remediation, Radical Mycology, and the Radical Mycology Convergence in the new book from Leila Darwish entitled Earth Repair. This book is an amazing guide to community-scale, DIY remediation and healing in disaster scenarios. Read the description below then head over to the book’s website at to pick up a copy!

Earth Repair: A Grassroots Guide To Healing Toxic and Damaged Landscapes

By: Leila Darwish


“Millions of acres of land have been contaminated by pesticides, improperly handled chemicals, dirty energy projects, toxic waste, and other pollutants in the United States and Canada. Conventional clean-up techniques employed by government and industry are not only incredibly expensive and resource-intensive, but can also cause further damage to the environment. More and more communities find themselves increasingly unable to rely on those companies and governments who created the problems to step in and provide solutions.

How can we, the grassroots, work with the power of living systems to truly heal and transform toxic and damaged landscapes into thriving, healthy, and fertile places once more? How can we respond to environmental disasters in accessible and community empowering ways?

Earth Repair explores a host of powerful and accessible grassroots bioremediation techniques to assist with the recovery of the lands and waters that nourish us. These techniques include:

Mycoremediation – using fungi to clean up contaminated soil and water.
Microbial remediation – using microorganisms to break down and bind contaminants
Phytoremediation – using plants to extract, bind, and transform toxins

Packed with valuable firsthand information, recipes and remedies from visionaries in the field, Earth Repair empowers communities and individuals to take action and heal contaminated and damaged land and water. Encompassing everything from remediating and regenerating abandoned city lots for urban farmers and gardeners, to responding and recovering from environmental disasters and industrial catastrophes such as oil spills and nuclear fallout, this fertile toolbox is essential reading for anyone who wishes to transform environmental despair into constructive action.

The book also features inspiring mycoremediation contributions from Peter McCoy (Radical Mycology) and Ja Schindler (Fungi for The People), as well as interviews with Paul Stamets (Fungi Perfecti), Mia Rose Maltz (Amazon Mycorenewal Project), and Scott Koch (Telluride Mushroom Festival).

For more information about the book and upcoming workshops, or to order the book, go to

About the Author:
Leila Darwish is a community organizer, permaculture practioner, educator, writer, grassroots herbalist, and urban gardener with a deep commitment to environmental justice, food sovereignty, and to providing accessible and transformative tools for communities dealing with toxic contamination of their land and drinking water.

Over the last decade, she has worked as a community organizer for different environmental organizations and community groups in Alberta, BC and the USA on campaigns such as tar sands, fracking, nuclear energy, coal, climate justice, water protection, and more. She is a certified permaculture designer and has also apprenticed on different organic farms across Canada and the USA.”