Porcelain Fungus

Porcelain Fungus ©Guy Edwardes/2020VISION

Porcelain fungus

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Scientific name: Oudemansiella mucida
The shiny, translucent porcelain fungus certainly lives up to its name in appearance. It can be seen growing on beech trees and dead wood in summer and autumn.

Top facts

Stats

Cap diameter: 2-8cm
Stem height: 5-8cm

Conservation status

Common.

When to see

July to October

About

The porcelain fungus can be found in beechwoods. It appears in late summer until late autumn on dead trunks and fallen branches, and occasionally it grows on dead branches high up in living trees. It is also named the 'Poached egg fungus' or 'Slimy beech cap'. Fungi belong to their own kingdom and get their nutrients and energy from organic matter, rather than photosynthesis like plants. It is often just the fruiting bodies, or 'mushrooms', that are visible to us, arising from an unseen network of tiny filaments called 'hyphae'. These fruiting bodies produce spores for reproduction, although fungi can also reproduce asexually by fragmentation.

What to look for

The caps of the porcelain fungus are white, translucent and very shiny; they start off convex, flattening out with age. The gills are white, broadly spaced and attached to the stem.

Where to find

Widespread.

Did you know?

The porcelain fungus is edible after washing and when the skin is removed.