What are the Most Common Backyard Mushrooms in Massachusetts or in the East?
Finding the most common backyard mushrooms in Massachusetts or the East was not as easy as I thought. Some are mistaken for other mushrooms, some only show in certain seasons, and plenty of them don’t show appear often.
That’s why I created a list of the 10 Most Common Backyard Mushrooms in Massachusetts!
This ultimate guide will give you the most common backyard mushrooms in Massachusetts or the east, how to identify them, and even where to find them in your backyard.
This article is intended to be for entertainment purposes only. There are similar-looking types of mushrooms that can be poisonous to humans and animals.
Do not use this as a guide to forage mushrooms. Do not use this as a guide to prepare, cook, and eat mushrooms.
You should work with your local mycological society, foraging experts, and local community clubs for identifying, foraging, and potentially eating mushrooms. In addition, you should never forage mushrooms on your own or use this guide to assist you in foraging mushrooms.
Read THIS Before Identifying Common Backyard Mushrooms
Knowing the type of mushroom growing in your backyard can be the difference between a fascinating hobby that can result in a nutritious and edible food source and a deadly toxin. Always make sure to work with your local city and gardening club before eating mushrooms found in the wild.
It is important to pay close attention to the following when picking or eliminating mushrooms in your backyard:
- The size, including the cap, gills, scales, spores, and stem.
- The color, including the cap, gills, scales, spores, and stem.
- Location, both in the United States and in your backyard
- Odor and even taste
And if you want to learn more about common mushrooms that grow in your backwatch the below video!
10 Most Common Backyard Mushrooms
#1. Ringless Honey Mushroom (Armillaria Tabescens)
- The Ringless Honey Mushroom has a golden, honey-colored cap, white spores, narrow to broad pinkish/brown gills, and thick, cluster stalks.
- This type of mushroom grows from late summer to early winter throughout the United States, including Massachusetts.
- It is important to kill these mushrooms when you see them as they will attack and kill trees by depleting them of water and nutrients. They are considered parasitic fungi.
- You can find the Ringless Honey Mushrooms in Oak Tree Stumps and Trunks around your backyard or in local parks.
- An interesting fact is that the ringless honey mushroom actually grows underneath the ground, rather than on top of it. The best way to get rid of this mushroom is from its roots beneath the ground!
#2. Field Mushroom (Agaricus campestris)
- The Field Mushroom has a white and pink cap, dark chocolate spores, narrow to broad white stalks that are brown, and deep pink and brown gills.
- This type of mushroom grows from late summer to early winter throughout the world, including Massachusetts, Ireland, and Wales.
- You can leave these mushrooms in your backyard. They grow on dead vegetation and will not kill trees, live plants, etc.
- The Field Mushroom can typically be found on dead vegetation, including grass, wood, and gardens throughout backyards and parks in Massachusetts.
- The Meadow Mushrooms sometimes can be confused for Field Mushrooms or other species due to their white gills and spores and therefore should not be foraged or eaten!
#3. Fly Agaric Mushrooms (Amanita muscaria)
- The Fly Agaric Mushroom has a deep red and orange cap, white spores, narrow white stalks, and white to pale yellow gills.
- This type of mushroom grows from late summer to late fall throughout the world, including United States, Ireland, and Britain.
- You should kill these mushrooms unless you want them to be a natural pesticide or herbicide in your backyard. This mushroom is common in Massachusetts and will grow on hardwood, including spruce, birch, and pine trees. It also is a type of mushroom that has no smell!
- The Fly Agaric Mushroom is the type of mushroom you will typically see and read about in fairly tales and will even see in fairy gardens across the world. They are even found in books from the United States to Germany.
#4. Morels Mushrooms (Morchella esculenta)
- The Morel Mushroom has a yellow and brown flesh orange cap, white spores, thick white or pale cream stalks, and brown gills.
- This type of mushroom grows from spring to early fall in the United States. While it can also be found in Ireland and Great Britain, it is much rarer. The Morel Mushroom is one of the most common backyard mushrooms that can be found.
- You can leave the Morel Mushroom in your backyard and even pick them up. This mushroom is considered symbiotic with its environment and can be found under trees and sometimes on trees. They are considered a beneficial partner with trees and insects won’t harm them either!
- Mushrooms can grow in all types of soil. The Morchella Esculenta though grows in chalky soil under living trees throughout backyards and parks.
- Did you know that the Morel Mushroom is one of the few mushrooms you can grow in your very own home?
#5. Haymaker Mushroom (Panaeolus foenisecii)
- The Haymaker Mushroom has a Brown cap, white spores, thin, small brown stalks, and brown gills.
- This type of mushroom grows from spring to early winter in Massachusetts and the United States. It can also be found throughout the Northern Hemisphere of the world.
- The Haymaker Mushroom is the most common backyard mushroom. You can expect it whether you mow or fertilize your law. While it is not a parasite to your lawn or plants, it should be removed so that it isn’t foraged by children. You will find this mushroom in grassy areas!
- This slightly unpleasantly smelly mushroom can be found in lawns, cracks in roads, and grassy areas throughout backyards and even in local parks.
- The Haymaker’s Mushroom is also known as the Mower’s Mushroom as this is a common backyard mushroom seen when mowing or tending to one’s lawn.
#6. Jack O Lantern Mushroom (Omphalotus olearius)
- The Jack O Lantern Mushroom has an Orange and Yellow cap, white spores, thick, orange and dark yellow stalks, and dark orange gills.
- This type of mushroom grows from early fall to winter in the United States, Ireland, Britain, and Southern Europe. No one or no animal will typically consume this type of mushroom.
- The Jack O Lantern Mushroom can be found in Massachusetts, the United States, and throughout Southern Europe. You will find it under trees in shaded areas, but should not be foraged.
- There are other types of similar mushroom species to the Jack O Lantern Mushroom that will grow in Europe and United States. Regardless of the specific type, they have similar characteristics and should be treated the same way.
#7. Destroying Angel Mushroom (Amanita virosa)
- The Destroying Angel Mushroom has a white cap, white spores, tall and thick white stems, , and white gills.
- This type of mushroom grows from summer to fall in the United States, Ireland, and Britain. No one or no animal will typically consume this type of mushroom as it is the deadliest common backyard mushroom on the planet.
- The Destroying Angel Mushroom can be found in backyards in Massachusetts and the United States. You will find it in grassy areas on the edge of wooded areas.
- This mushroom should not be consumed! It is the deadliest mushroom on the planet and can cause organ failure and even death.
- The Destroying Angel Mushroom is one of the most misidentified mushrooms by novice mushroom foragers. Because of this you should never forage destroying angel mushrooms or mushrooms that look similar.
#8. Deadly Galerina Mushroom (Galerina marginata)
- The Funeral Bell Mushroom has a honey yellow and brown cap, brown spores, tall and thick brown stems, cream gills.
- This type of mushroom grows from summer to fall in the United States, Ireland, and Britain.
- The Funeral Bell Mushroom can be found in backyards in Massachusetts and the United States. You will find them in Stumps, Dead Trees, Broken Branches, and sometimes even dead leaves in the fall.
- It should be noted that even though the Funeral Bell Mushroom typically grows in the summer and fall in Massachusetts, in some parts of the United States it can grow any time of the year! You cannot find it in backyards and in local parks.
#9. False Parasol (Chlorophyllum rhacodes)
- The False Parasol Mushroom has a white and cream cap, white spores, tall and thick white and cream stems, and cream gills.
- The False Parasol Mushroom can be found in backyards in Massachusetts and the United States. You will find them in Woodland Areas and also in Humous-Rich Soil in Gardens.
- The False Parasol Mushroom is another mythical mushroom that can be found in European folklore and is known for its connection with fairies and fairy rings.
#10. Deadly Webcap (Cortinarius rubellus)
- The Deadly Webcap Mushroom has a tawny brown cap, brown spores, tall and thick yellow stems, and tawny brown gills.
- This type of mushroom grows from summer to winter in the United States, Ireland, and Britain. No one or no animal will typically consume this type of mushroom as it is considered a deadly backyard mushroom.
- The Deadly Webcap Mushroom can be found in backyards in Massachusetts and the United States. You will find them under pine and spruce trees and in damp soil.
- The Deadly Webcap Mushroom is another type of mushroom you are likely to see in fairytale books, artist paintings, and numerous mushroom websites.
Common Factors of the Most Common Backyard Mushrooms
As a reminder, the below factors are common for the most common backyard mushrooms
- Most are parasitic to humans and should not be consumed.
- These mushrooms can be found throughout your backyard, but most commonly on trees and in wet areas of your backyard.
- Each mushroom on this list has a common fungus relative that it can be mistaken for. Leverage your local mycological societies and experts before identifying common backyard mushrooms.
- Most mushrooms on this list will only grow a maximum height of 6 inches tall and 3 or 4 inches wide.
- A majority of the mushrooms on this list will have no smell to them.
- The mushrooms on this will all have different colors of spores, caps, etc. This makes common backyard mushrooms beautiful and a great hobby to get into.
And remember that you should pay attention to this guide, other local experts, and your local mushroom clubs before foraging. This can be the difference between a nutritious and delicious mushroom and a harmful and even deadly fungus.
If you want to learn about other mushrooms, chickens, vegetables, fruits, herbs, and bees check out thegardeningdad and search for the plant you want to grow in the upper right-hand corner.