There are two parts to Hoe Wood: A public section, which forms part of Sussex Wildlife Trust's Woods Mill nature reserve where my colleagues run their Nature Tots sessions and school visits; and a private section, also owned by Sussex Wildlife Trust, which is accessible only with permission.
I have permission from the site manager to visit the private section of Hoe Wood for survey purposes, so I started there. But there was very little happening fungus-wise.
I recognised this as some kind of Coral species – a Clavulina or Ramaria species – and noted that its flesh seemed quite brittle. With those finely branching tips which you can just about make out in the photo, I think this is Crested Coral Clavulina coralloides; a common species in woodlands.
A few patches of fresh yellow mushrooms emerged from bits of deadwood lying around. These look good for Sulphur Tuft Hypholoma fasciculare.
That was about it, save for a few grey Bonnet Mycena mushrooms, which I did my best to ignore.
So I headed from there back to Woods Mill, to pick up the path into the public section of Hoe Wood, which runs from the dipping pond. There seemed to be much more happening here.
I saw no sign of the Fly Agaric Amanita muscaria which had looked so splendid on Monday.
|Fly Agaric Amanita muscaria|
Not entirely sure what genus I'm in here. I think it's probably a Knight Tricholoma, with those white and emarginate gills.
Let's have a go with Funga Nordica!
The white cap and absence of a ring on the stem takes me to Key B: Dominantly white or cream Tricholoma.
Question 1 asks about a radial structure on the cap. I see nothing of that sort.
Question 2 splits things according to smell and the colour of the cap. My mushroom does smell of something, although I couldn't tell you if it's more like "celery" or an "unpleasant flower". But a white or cream cap should take me to question 3, so I'll press on.
Question 3 asks whether the cap turns distinctly yellow when bruised. I give it a good poke and decide it doesn't turn distinctly yellow.
Question 4 wants to know if the gills are "distant to very distant" or "crowded". I go with crowded.
Question 5, given my mushroom's "white to cream" cap, takes me on to question 6.
Question 6 takes me to my final choice, between T. stiparophyllum, which boasts among its characters "smell nauseatingly rancid", or T. album with a smell which is "aromatic to sweet, reminding of honey". Another feature which separates them is a distinctly ribbed margin (in T. stiparophyllum) which isn't present in T. album. I don't believe my mushroom has a ribbed margin.
This has gone better than I was expecting and I'm inclined to call this a White Knight Tricholoma album.
Moving on, I see more Sulphur Tuft Hypholoma fasciculare.
As well as Birch Polypore Piptoporus betulinus, another familiar species.
Growing on a fallen tree trunk (Birch?), I was very pleased to find this. A great example of Purple Jellydisc Ascocoryne sarcoides, I believe.
Last but not least, this Honey Fungus Armillaria mellea blended in surprisingly well with the background, considering it was growing in such profusion on this old tree stump.
You can see here that the pale stem ring persists in these mature mushrooms, which is a feature of A. mellea.
For the record
Location: Hoe Wood
Grid reference: TQ217136
Entered into FRDBI: 12/02/2017