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Offlinemegaman3
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Liberty Cap question
    #1793029 - 08/08/03 07:01 PM (18 years, 5 months ago)

Sup? I was reading a mushroom guide at my local library, and it said that liberty caps (semilanceata) grow mostly in pastures, but that they can also be found in grassy areas with rich soils at the outside borders of forests (apparently it's more humid and slightly cooler there), as well as occasionally in rich grassy areas inside the forest itself.

Is this inaccurate? Is it absolutely impossible for them to grow in or around the woods, if those areas contain rich wild grasses? Am I correct to assume that semilanceata is not a dung mushroom, even though it grows predominantly in pastures, and that it is a wild grasses mushroom instead that prefers rich soil? Is it the wild grasses or the dung that makes it prefer pastures? If it doesn't grow directly from dung, but the dung creates a rich soil, then isn't it possible that it could grow in rich forest soil where wild grasses are found?

I went camping recently, in the woods, and I was able to find a LOT of mushrooms, even though I have not been able to find any on lawns or trees in the city this spring. I was about to give up on hunting until the fall, but after seeing how conducive the forest is to mushroom growth, even in the spring, I am encouraged. This leads me to postulate that the soil in forests is richer, and that this combined with the fact that forests are shadier supports many mushroom species. So if the soil is rich there, and there are some wild grasses sometimes, could semilanceata possibly grow there?

If it's not possible, I would like to know why. Does it absolutely require dung? What about forests would prevent semilanceata from being able to grow in its wild grasses?

The picture on page 23 of Psilocybin Mushrooms of the World shows an interesting picture of liberty caps growing on an island ecosystem consisting of a tuft of grass among inhospitable gravely soil. This leads me to believe that this was not in the middle of a cow pasture. What do you guys think of this?

Thanks.


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Offlinecanid
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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: megaman3]
    #1793055 - 08/08/03 07:08 PM (18 years, 5 months ago)

P. semilanceata is most commonly agreed uppon to grw in a sybiotic ascociation with particular types of grasses.
the mycelium encases the roots of the grass and steals nutrients, i'm not sure what the benifit to the grass is but it may be that the mycelium helps to break down certain organic nutrients that the grass could otherwise not make use of.


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Attn PWN hunters: If you should come across a bluing Psilocybe matching P. pellicolusa please smell it.
If you detect a scent reminiscent of Anethole (anise) please preserve a specimen or two for study and please PM me.


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: canid]
    #1793068 - 08/08/03 07:13 PM (18 years, 5 months ago)

Oh ok concretefeet. Well then, why does it prefer pastures grazed by sheep and cows if it's not to grow from their dung? Am I correct in assuming that all it needs is the right types of grass, rich soil, and the correct moisture/temperature etc? If a supportive type of grass could be found in or around a forest where rich soil is found, is it not possible that semilanceata could grow there?

That picture in Psilocybin Mushrooms of the World intrigues me greatly. I would love to know in what kind of environment it was found. I doubt that it's in a pasture, since it's surrounded by gravel. It was found in Italy.


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Offlinecanid
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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: megaman3]
    #1793128 - 08/08/03 07:25 PM (18 years, 5 months ago)

it tends to prefer pastures due to the fact that the grasses it favors are the same as those that livestock eat, hence: those that grow abundantly in pastures.


--------------------



Attn PWN hunters: If you should come across a bluing Psilocybe matching P. pellicolusa please smell it.
If you detect a scent reminiscent of Anethole (anise) please preserve a specimen or two for study and please PM me.


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Offlinefloridaboi101
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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: canid]
    #1793662 - 08/08/03 09:46 PM (18 years, 5 months ago)

I have seen many many many Liberty Caps here in Fl and actually most of them seem to grow right outta the poo some near swampy areas and around St Augustine and bahia grasses...which are highly use for grazing :grin:


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InvisibleGumby
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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: floridaboi101]
    #1793673 - 08/08/03 09:49 PM (18 years, 5 months ago)

You haven't seen any liberty caps in Florida. They don't grow there.


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OfflinePaid
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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: megaman3]
    #1793680 - 08/08/03 09:51 PM (18 years, 5 months ago)

In my experiance it can grow in any grass that is grazed, be it by deer, cows, sheep, rabbits or whatever. It can also grow in grass that has been fertilised with slurry, or liquid manure.

So it is a pretty versitle shroom.

I do find that open hills and sheep grazed highlands are the best, easyest places to find them though.

Good luck, get out hunting after the rains :-)


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OfflinePaid
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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: Paid]
    #1793685 - 08/08/03 09:56 PM (18 years, 5 months ago)

So, concretefeet your of the symbiotic grass relationship
school of thought? Could you tell me a little more on
that please :-)

My own thoughts are sorta that it likes well decomposted dung,
but these are just from observations of mine.


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Offlinemegaman3
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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: megaman3]
    #1798289 - 08/10/03 03:54 PM (18 years, 5 months ago)

So again, does anyone have any ideas as to where the picture of semilanceata was taken, where they are growing in a tuft of grass in a place surrounded by gravel? Could it be a pasture?

And have liberty caps ever been found in or around a forest, along roadsides in rural areas, and other non-pasture and non-private places?

Thanks!


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InvisibleSpiritus
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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: megaman3]
    #1806698 - 08/12/03 07:15 PM (18 years, 5 months ago)

bump, i am interested in an awnser to this


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: Spiritus]
    #1806800 - 08/12/03 07:53 PM (18 years, 5 months ago)

Recent ecological studies have shown that Psilocybe semilanceata mycelium does not form symbiotic mutualisms with grass roots; rather, hyphae invade and consume already dying root cortices in a nutritional strategy edging towards parasitism.
This behaviour may explain some of the difficulties encountered in the artificial culture of liberty caps, as well as their habitat preferences. They enjoy dung-enriched soils of various concentrations but also have clear adaptations for exploiting grass root systems.


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: pluteus]
    #1807574 - 08/12/03 11:30 PM (18 years, 5 months ago)

That's interesting Pluteus. Do you have links to any semilanceata studies? I can't read enough about this fascinating species :-) Even re-reading stuff I already read fascinates me.

So then if that is true about the dying grass, would that mean that you're more likely to find semilanceata in browner grass rather than very rich dark green grass?


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: megaman3]
    #1807821 - 08/13/03 12:30 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

Exellent, pluteus.


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Invisibletheshiftingwalls
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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: Spiritus]
    #1807848 - 08/13/03 12:41 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

What type of grass does it prefer?


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: theshiftingwalls]
    #1808364 - 08/13/03 05:57 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

I don't think n e 1 knows... :frown:


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Offlinepluteus
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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: Ego Death]
    #1808491 - 08/13/03 08:33 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

Keay, S. M. and A. E. Brown (1990). Colonization by Psilocybe semilanceata of roots of grassland flora. Mycological Research 94(1): 49-56

sorry, no link, you'll have to refer to the original journal article or search around

This article begins to address the issue of grass species preference.

I don't know about your brown grass theory, megaman. Grasses are constantly sloughing off portions of their root systems as they grow, so P. semilanceata colonization is not correlated with plant death. The digestion of a dying root by P. semilanceata would release nutrients into the soil that could then promote the growth of surrounding grasses or even a different region of the same root system.

There are some other more recent papers, I will look them up sometime.


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: pluteus]
    #1809985 - 08/13/03 05:16 PM (18 years, 5 months ago)

Thanks for your post Pluteus! Do you know if it's possible to subscribe to that journal? Where did you find the article, in the library?

And I see your point about the dying grass thing. Come to think of it, many of the pics I have seen of semilanceata has shown green grass.


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: megaman3]
    #1810723 - 08/13/03 07:58 PM (18 years, 5 months ago)

hmm... I think they will do individual subscriptions, but it might cost you a lot... I get mine almost free as I am a member of the British Mycological Society (the organization behind the journal). It's published by Cambridge University Press. http://uk.cambridge.org/
Most science colleges and universities will have a subscription and archives.

But thinking about it, that journal is not really that useful for mushroom fanatics as its articles cover all of the fungi kingdom and are always highly technical and thus very hard to follow (not to mention boring) if you aren't a professional mycologist. Experiments in yeast genetics, molecular studies of population dynamics in moulds, fungal enzyme chemistry, that sort of thing.

Fortunately, the British Mycological Society publish two other journals: 'The Mycologist' and 'Field Mycology' which are far less technical. Field Mycology is just a fantastic, fantastic journal for mushroom lovers - lavishly illustrated, and containing highly useful info like identification secrets, mushroom lore, recent rare or new discoveries, news of mycologists and conventions, etc. You might even see something by me in there ;o)

I guess the only drawback is that it focuses on UK mushrooms more than american ones, but then the UK and american mushroom flora have a lot in common.

http://titles.cambridge.org/journals/journal_catalogue.asp?historylinks=SUBJ&mnemonic=FMY



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Invisiblemjshroomer
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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: pluteus]
    #1810896 - 08/13/03 08:59 PM (18 years, 5 months ago)

There is a c ompanion article to t he first one by Keay. I have both in my files however I will not be home until later fall.

Sorry. I will post at Nan's Nook the pages.

I still believe that they are attached to living grasses (through the mycellia) as i have collected them for more than thirty years and these authors, as noted above, are very technical in their writing and boring and I relally do not agree with their findings and a few others such as Gartz, Stijve and Watling also disagree on this. YEt as also noted above, cultivation of the liberty cap is a problem because of the amounts needed for dosages so it is of little interest to many for cultivation and becaue Cubes are the number one cultivated entheogenic shroom and the easiest to handle.

mj

Still a good post on the subject.

mj

If the grass is green above the ground how can the roots be dead.

mj And yes they grow in dry srttraw-colored grasses as well.

mj


Edited by mjshroomer (08/13/03 09:02 PM)


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Offlinepluteus
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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: mjshroomer]
    #1812558 - 08/14/03 07:17 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

hey MJ
These papers don't contradict that P. semilanceata is attached to living grasses. All they say is that the bits of root they are attached to are 'moribund' (beginning to die off anyway). Microscopic examination showed that while hyphae invaded apparently intact root systems, the individual cells being consumed were already dead. Thus liberties can still be attached to healthy grasses without being anything but saprotrophic. If you read my original post, you will see I refer to 'portions' of the root system being dead, not the root system itself, and also explain how this is a normal feature of grass root systems. As grasses grow, they shed little bits of root. Simple as that.

I have always regarded Psilocybe as an entirely saprotrophic genus with no transitions to mycorrhizal symbiosis or parasitism. It would be very interesting to find evidence to the contrary. There are now very secure experimental methods (using radiolabelled nutrients/molecular markers) to demonstrate if a plant/fungus interaction is mycorrhizal in nature, so the situation should become more clear in time.

I totally agree with liberty cap cultivation being pointless apart perhaps from the challenge/novelty value.



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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: pluteus]
    #1812609 - 08/14/03 08:19 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

Good reading thanks, i think i shall sign up for the
field mycology journal. I have never seen liberty caps growin in dead grass, but you explaine that well, another thought is that many
meadows contain many grass speices, some dying of as others take over, throughout the year. So the prevalance of dead roots and root systems is pretty high in any grass area.

Do you have much experiance with english Psilocybe hunting?


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: Paid]
    #1812611 - 08/14/03 08:21 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

P.s, i dont think its pointless to attempt to grow
Psilocybe semilanceata, it seems that more and more info is becoming avalible, and could show us the key :-)


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: Paid]
    #1812654 - 08/14/03 08:49 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

Hey Paid
I didn't really mean to use the word pointless, I agree that techniques for successful fruiting continue to be improved. I just meant that for the purposes of most cultivators other species have a clear edge in terms of convenience.

I do have quite a lot of experience hunting English psilocybes - semilanceata and cyanescens. What about yourself?


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Invisiblemjshroomer
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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: pluteus]
    #1812739 - 08/14/03 09:53 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

But isn't Psicloycbe cyanescens mycorhizzial as it grows in association with certain plants, niot excluding its dpenedence on alder and other hardwoods.

Anyway you are correct. and have a shroomy day. I will look for those articles when I come home.

mj


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: pluteus]
    #1812792 - 08/14/03 10:25 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

I have been picking liberty caps for about 15 years, but only
found out about the wood lovers at the end of last season, I still
managed to find 1 though..

So hoping for a wet autum :-)
Thanks for the info.


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Offlinepluteus
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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: Paid]
    #1812908 - 08/14/03 11:08 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

Hey, I gather from the notes on your photograph that you found a Psilocybe cyanescens fruitbody in a natural forest setting ???
Psilocybe cyanescens is nearly exclusively found on the artifically fragmented woodchip material used to mulch plant beds in gardens, or to cover footpaths, racecourses, roundabouts etc. There are records of naturalized colonies in England (e.g. Epping Forest) but they are extremely few. I'm sure the British Mycological Society would be very interested to hear about exactly where and when you found your specimen. If you still have the dried specimen, please consider sending it to the fungal herbarium at Kew Gardens as it could be important material for researchers seeking to delimit the species or study its population structure/ecology.
Well done mate :-)
You might want to try looking in more likely places this season, i.e. the habitats I mention above.


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: pluteus]
    #1812936 - 08/14/03 11:20 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

hey MJ
I can see why you think mushrooms like Psilocybe cyanescens might be mycorrhizal as they are often found in association with certain plants. However, there are many instances of them growing on large expanses woodchip mulch in the absence of live plants. The term 'mycorrhizal' specifies a relationship between a living plant and living fungus, in which water and nutrients are exchanged between the two and so both benefit. Psilocybe cyanescens does indeed show preferences for certain types of wood, but this wood is already dead. Thus it is a saprotrophic mushroom. I have observed often observed P. cyanescens growing in botanical gardens in plant beds full of all kinds of different live plants, but the underlying hyphal network is always associated with the dead wood covering the bed. In earlier literature P. cyanescens is often reported as being fond of rhododendron beds, but I think this can be attributed to woodchips being a very popular material for mulching rhododendron beds. It may well be that certain plants like rhododendrons promote P. cyanescens growth by providing shade and trapping humidity in a certain way, but this is not a mycorrhizal relationship nor is it essential for P. cyanescens growth.

By the way MJ congratulations on your new psilocybe discoveries in recent years I have found them very exciting ;-)


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: pluteus]
    #1815778 - 08/15/03 02:53 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

Paid: the reasons for my conclusions about the friuting habbits of P. semilanceata are much like to your own. i have adopted those ideas from the litereature that seem most sound and in congruence with my own observations.


--------------------



Attn PWN hunters: If you should come across a bluing Psilocybe matching P. pellicolusa please smell it.
If you detect a scent reminiscent of Anethole (anise) please preserve a specimen or two for study and please PM me.


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Invisiblemjshroomer
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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: pluteus]
    #1815825 - 08/15/03 03:16 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

I fully concur on that note as I too have seen the same growth behavior throughout the pnw over the past thirty years.

However I have only observed them in a few areas of rhoderdendrons and once in a few rose gardens. mostly I have observed them in various stages od\f dead alder., sioometimes mixed alder and willow, steer-co wood-chipc. alder branches and even alder sawdust and with Paul Stamets growing on corrigated cardboard .

mj


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: canid]
    #1815831 - 08/15/03 03:20 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

Cool, its just i was curiouse because its not somthing ive tryed as a substrate yet, and i'm sure i could easyerly use grass roots as a substrate. In fact i think that will be one of my next attempts.


pluteus, that Psilocybe was picked in ruff wood, nowere near any wood chips or man made beds, and growing directly under an elm, from the forrest floor. So i would guess its its natural setting, i do still have a dryed specimen, and worked at kew for a time, so maybe i should contact them.
I can also recheck the spot this season as its in the wood attached to my house :-)
Spore size checks were done. I'll pm you the data if your interessted.


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: Paid]
    #1815845 - 08/15/03 03:28 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

Paid: do you plan to try inoculating live grasses via a slurry?

i would be interested in any thoughts you have had on the subject.


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Attn PWN hunters: If you should come across a bluing Psilocybe matching P. pellicolusa please smell it.
If you detect a scent reminiscent of Anethole (anise) please preserve a specimen or two for study and please PM me.


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: Paid]
    #1816029 - 08/15/03 05:17 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

If you go to my sight you can see many images of P. cyanescens growing in grassy areas where there are no wood chuips, but lawn mowers spread them fromt he edges of muclhed areas. I have also photographed some where a large fairy ring of P. cyans growing completenly around an apple tree. This was shown to me in Astoria Oregon by a cool shroomer I met at Breightenbush hot springs.

mj



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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: Paid]
    #1816131 - 08/15/03 06:52 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

Paid, your idea of using grass roots as a substrate sounds ingenious to me!  Try to use both dying, live, and dead roots, especially from grasses in the fall.  Please keep us posted on your progress!  Maybe some day indoor cultivation of semilanceata, or even prolific and easy to maintain outdoor beds, could be a successful dream.  That would be awesome because then we wouldn't have to bother the farmers, and since semilanceata is slimy looking and rather small, I think that most people who don't know about its psychoactivity would just walk right past the patch  :smile:

I suppose that one would still have to bother the farmers in order to collect the grass roots from pasture grasses.  Also, the fact that liberty caps grow mainly in pastures grazed by pooping sheep or cows in North America might indicate that using only naked grass roots might not be enough.

I wish I lived in England where semilanceata grows in public places and not just private farms... I also wish that foenisecii would be extremely potent LOL!


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: megaman3]
    #1816157 - 08/15/03 07:15 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

Liberty caps have grown in public places in the PNW but they are rare and usually a year or two and then gone from such lawns.

And that could be your american dream. to someday own your own farm with cattle and your own personal suppkly of liberty caps.


mj


Edited by mjshroomer (08/15/03 07:16 AM)


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Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: canid]
    #1816176 - 08/15/03 07:27 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

I spawned to live grass directly ontop, brushing in the
millet. I also lifted some turf and put a layer of
composted sheep poo and millet spawn down, then returfed.
As well as using colonised honeywater in various places that
seemed like the right sort of areas.
Only problem was, the culture i used was ink cap, not
Psilocybe semilanceata. But i did grow some lovely incaps in the
area were i lifted the turf :-)and fruited a few indoors as well lol.

I have some spores (thanks to a freind) that have germinated on dog biscuit agar and seem to be doing well, but now the season nears, i shall clone from some of my favorite spots, and try a few more experiments next year i think :-)


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Offlinepluteus
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Registered: 08/12/03
Posts: 170
Loc: London area, UK
Last seen: 15 years, 2 months
Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: Paid]
    #1816217 - 08/15/03 08:34 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

MJ - yes i have seen your interesting pictures. I think it is rarer to find P. cyanescens in a natural setting in England than in the Pacific northwest. In England they grow on many types of woodchips, often a mixture of types, and it seems most frequently and prolifically under conifers, but sometimes without associated plants. These is a lot of debate of course as to how closely the mushroom called P. cyanescens in the Pacific northwest is related to the English shroom of the same name.

Paid - yes I would be interested in your P. cyan data. I could pass these on to Kew if you like, and you can send dried material to the mycology house. So you worked at Kew eh, great place isn't it :-) The location data would be confidential and not revealed in detail in any publication.
Good luck with your liberty cap cultivation efforts. There are a lot of patches growing around my house, so if you require any more prints during the season I'll be happy to send. I will also post the names of grass species mentioned by that paper I cited at some point.
If you have the space I recommend starting some outdoor P. cyanescens beds as these can be extraordinarily productive in the UK. P. cyanescens naturally grow in very dense clusters (literally thousands in a few square metres), produce multiple, abundant flushes, and fruitbodies that are much larger than those of liberty caps (English strains usually 3-10 fresh caps for a good trip), so cyan beds in my opinion are really worth the effort. Can supply fresh prints during season.


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OfflinePaid
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Registered: 03/13/03
Posts: 5,376
Loc: Zone ate
Last seen: 17 years, 11 months
Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: pluteus]
    #1816241 - 08/15/03 09:00 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

I've been making beds of Psilocybe azurescens, Psilocybe bohemica, Psilocybe cyanescens, Psilocybe arcana and last but not least, mainly
Psilocybe subaeruginosa all summer. Because subaer's seem to colonise every wood type I've tried them on so far :-)

I should be ok for spore prints from libs, but i am after the Spanish liberty cap. Thank you for the offer though, were you at the bgg?

I'll compile the data, and dig up the dryed specimen on the poss Ps. cyan



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Offlineken1
...
Registered: 08/15/03
Posts: 5
Loc: uk
Last seen: 18 years, 3 months
Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: Paid]
    #1817946 - 08/15/03 08:23 PM (18 years, 5 months ago)

liberty caps dont need dung at all. i've seen them grow regulary in certain local city parks, with no dung.

the most amazing crop i ever found was on a pair of bowling greens in one of the parks, only found them one year (ive checked every year since :wink: ), but u seriously wouldnt believe it. it was like a carpet of huge liberty caps covering each bownling green, 2-3cm caps on each, touching each other right across it.

for those that dont know, bowling greens are turfed areas, mowed really short & covered with sand to stop the grass from growing too much.

me & 2 friends picked 250 in under 10 minutes (before we were moved by park keepers), my friends went back later to finish the job & picked around 600.

only slight problem was sandy shrooms :wink:

they only seem to grow on high land, around here (northern england) at least.


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Offlinepluteus
level-9 deviant

Registered: 08/12/03
Posts: 170
Loc: London area, UK
Last seen: 15 years, 2 months
Re: Liberty Cap question [Re: ken1]
    #1819436 - 08/16/03 11:53 AM (18 years, 5 months ago)

hey Paid, I did not realize you were a seasoned wood substrate cultivator, that is great. I grow cyan + azure and at the moment I am playing around with P. argentipes, have you tried out this species? I have a contact who keeps promising to send me subaeruginosa but no luck yet. I don't know what the 'bgg' is, some sort of mushroom convention? I go to the academic ones...
Ken - I have also found village and bowling greens good spots for liberties. The fact that the ground is rolled flat and the grass is kept mown short makes picking easy, and they seem to flourish on greens that have not seen any fresh manure in decades.


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