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First off im not if im posting this in the correct forum (as amanitas are mushrooms) but I'll find out soon enough anyway. Once while picking psilocybe semilceata late last summer, I remember seeing a lot of these large red mushrooms with dodgy white stuff over them. My immediate thought was my god those things are the evilest looking things I have ever seen and I thought nothing more of them until 2 months ago that is. During one of my normal days in work which involves mainly browsing erowid and the shroomery I discovered that the dodgy mushrooms I had seen were Amanita muscaria and they had hallucinogenic properties. Anyway I haven't been back to my picking spot since liberty caps aren't in season for another good 3 months. But i'm intruigued by these other magic mushrooms. I have done a lot of research, trip reports etc and I know how to prepare them to minimise nausea and increase the muscimol content. However im still not sure of growing season I live in the UK and was wondering if anyone out there could help, I would also be grateful for any advice concerning mental preparation and perhaps even a few of you could share your personal experiences with it.
-------------------- The punishment which the wise suffer, who refuse to take part in government, is to live under the government of worse men.
They are generally fruiting through the summer here in Colorado. That would be mostly July and August.
As far as eating them, people here seem to try them fairly often, and they are one of the most common species resulting in calls to the Poison Center. The majority of people who try them here experience distinctly unpleasant symptoms. I know several people here who have tried them and they all have told me they wouldn't try them again.
In other areas of the world they are regularly used for food and for spiritual purposes. My suspicion is be that the active chemical content varies considerably from region to region. You should be alert to the possibility that the specimens you find locally may produce extremely unpleasant effects or little or no effects.
If you are determined to try some, be cautious, especially at first. Start with very small doses and work your way up. Assume at first that your specimens are very high in the active compounds and that it'll be somewhat unpleasant. You can always try again later, and you'll minimize the bad stuff that way.
Finally, be very sure of your identification. Amanita includes the mushrooms which cause the most fatalities in the world.