Last Updated - 7.24.2013
Edible Wild Mushrooms Commonly Found In Pennsylvania And Personally Eaten Regularly
Photo of winecap Stropharia
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Aborted Armillaria
Armillaria abortivum
Aborted entoloma

Almost Bluing
King Boletus

Boletus subcaerulescens

Artist's Conk
Ganoderma applanatum

Bear's Head Tooth
Hericium americanum

Black Trumpets
Craterellus fallax

Clitocybe nuda

Brick Caps / Brick Tops
Hypholoma sublateritium

Cauliflower Mushroom
Sparassis spathulata

Chicken of the Woods
Laetiporus sulphureus

Inonotus obliquus

Comb Tooth
Hericium coralloides

Common Laccaria
Laccaria laccata

Corrugated Cap Milky
Lactarius corrugis

Giant Puffball
Langemannia gigantea

Golden Chanterelle
Cantharellus cibarius

Hedgehog Mushroom Big
Dentinum repandum

Hedgehog Little
Dentinum umbilicatum

Hen of the Woods
Grifola frondosa

Honey Mushrooms
Armilleria mellea

Horn of Plenty
Craterellus cornucopioides

Horse Mushroom
Agaricus arvensis

Hygrophorus Milky
Lactarius hygrophoroides

Lilac Bolete
Xanthoconium separans / Boletus separans

Lingzhi / Reishi
Ganoderma lucidum & G. tsugae

Lion's Mane / Old Man's Beard
Hericium erinaceus

Meadow Mushrooms / Pinkies
Agaricus compestris

Oyster Mushroom
Pleurotus ostreatus

Purple-gilled Laccaria
Laccaria ochropurpurea

Quilted Green Russula
Russula virescens

Red Chanterelle
Cantharellus cinnabarinus

Rooted Oudemansiella
Oudemansiella radicata

Shaggy Mane
Coprinus comatus

Smooth Chanterelle
Cantharellus lateritius

Tinder Fungus
Fomes fomentarius

Turkey Tail
Trametes versicolor / Coriolus versicolor / Polyporus versicolor

Two-colored Bolete
Boletus bicolor

Voluminous-latex Milky
Lactarius volemus

Winter Chanterelle
Cantharellus tubaeformis
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The Prince ? or Almond Mushroom ?
Agaricus augustus or A. subrufescens
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Wild Food Foraging
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Russula virescens

Quilted Green Russula

If you want to drive yourself crazy try identifying Russulas. As a Genera they are probably the hardest for the average mushroom enthusiast to identify to individual species.
It's the colors! There are so many of them! It's not unusual to walk in the woods in early Summer and see ten different colors of Russulas before going a couple of hundred yards.

The other problem is the various hues of the same base color. When you see a yellow one you will discover that there are several different hues of yellow Russula that pretty much have the same characteristics. Or even worse, the red varieties of Russulas.

It's bewildering !

Take advice from someone that has been eating wild mushrooms for almost four decades. Choose two or three Russulas to become knowledgeable about and forget the others. Leave them for the deer and squirrels.

Here is one that I truly enjoy. It tastes real good. It has a good tecture after cooking, similar to the cultivated type that most people are accustomed to.
And it's decent sized.
Photo of Quilted Green Russula - Russula virescens

White gills. White stalk. Stalk usually even thickness, sometimes narrowing toward the bottom.
Stalk grows right out of the ground - there is no volva like Amanita mushrooms grow from.
Also important to distinguish it from Amanita's is the fact there is no annulus, that is, a ring of tissue on the stem left over from a partial veil.
Photo of gills and stem of as Quilted Green Russula - Russula virescens

They can be very light colored green.
Photo of top view of a light hued version of a Quilted Green Russula - Russula virescens

Or they can be darker. However, they will always have some shade of green in them.

The real distinctive feature is the quilt like pattern on the cap surface - whether light green or dark green.
If it does not have the quilt-like pattern don't pick it. At least don't pick it until you find out out what Russula it may be. We want the prototype look! It has to have the quilt-like look.
Photo of the top of a Quilted Green Russula - Russula virescens

Even when the one you pick is small, like the one being held below, the quilt pattern should be evident. If it is not evident then it is some other type of green Russula.
It should also have some areas on the cap surface that have goldish shades. Mostly you'll find that lighter colored area near the center but not always.
Photo of a held Quilted Green Russula - Russula virescens

Quilted Green Russulas are nice to find because there are often times in the woods when there are scant pickings of other varieties but if you go to some beech woods or beech/oak/pine mixed woods not choked with undergrowth you will usually find a few to take home.

Here is a great illustrative photo of the quilt pattern and the lightly colored goldish areas in the center which is what the prototype is supposed to look like.
These four were dusty/dirty when picked so I wiped them with a wet paper towel using water from my water bottle.
Photo of 4 Quilted Green Russula with caps washed off - Russula virescens
You will notice after getting to know these that they like growing in woodland paths and trails where they often force their way up through hard packed ground, often resulting in dirt covered caps.
A brush or damp paper towel will take care of that.

Best practice is to gather only 'Prototypes' until you become more familiar with Russulas. Leave the other green ones alone.
Another best practice is to cut the stems and check for larva tunnels. If there are tunnels you may still be able to salvage plenty of the mushroom by trimming until you find that you have cut enough off so that the larva tunnels are no longer seen.
Sometimes it means you will only have a cap that is salvageable.

Russula virescens - A/K/A - Quilted Green Russula or Green Quilted Russula
DATE - July through September. More numerous in early Summer and in better condition.
FOUND - Laurel Hill State Park and Kooser State Park near Bakersville, Pa.
Also in woodsy areas near Stahlstown, Pa. and numerous at Mammoth County Park, Mammoth, Pa.
Mostly scattered singly here and there in beech or mixed beech/oak woods. Sometimes in groups of 4 or 5.

Weather conditions: Wet Spring and early Summer brings them out real good.

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