Black Witches Butter – Mushroom Hunting Diary – Only in Missouri Series Entry #2

Last year, I took an interest in mushroom hunting after spotting a chicken of the woods last year near my neighbors house


I’ve sinced learned that there is a whole world of edible mushrooms available year round.  I’m always keeping a look out for new ones.

Today, as I was walking along, I noticed a log with lush moss and took a photograph.  I knew it has some sort of something growing on it and in hind sight, I probably should have taken a better close up picture.

The Backyard Farmgirl


I believe the dark black mushrooms growing on this fallen decaying log to be that of Black Witches Butter also known as Exidia glandulosa, it’s scientific name.

Witches butter is more commonly yellow, but in this case, the Brits also refer to this species as Witches Butter.  It is found in the fall and winter months.  In Missouri, we’ve had quite a bit of moisture this year and today’s temperatures have been in the 30’s and highs in the upper 50’s.

Black Witches Butter got it’s name in the 1700’s when it was thought to have grown on fence posts and door posts of one who had a spell cast upon them by a witch.  The only way to break the spell was to stab the fungas to death.  Pretty gross and I’m not so sure about that – but in any case, that’s the story I’ve been told.

In more recent times, it is thought to be edible, though not very flavorful.  Typically it is used in soups to give added texture.  The Asians covet it for it’s medicinal value believing it to enhance the immune system and help with inflammation.

I have not tried eating this, and most likely won’t.  You can’t believe everything you read and I’m  not going to die trying.

In any case, it was an interesting find on my morning walk.

DISCLAIMER:  Please do your OWN research and when in doubt don’t consume mushrooms or use them for medicine to be safe.  I can not confirm that these are edible except what I have found in articles on the internet.  




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