There are many species of mushroom in the world. Sometimes the caps of mushrooms will split open and spread out, like the petals of a flower, if their environment is too dry. But did you know there are some mushrooms that look like flowers naturally? Read on to learn more about these beautiful “blooming” shrooms!
What You'll Learn Today
Mushrooms That Look Like Flowers
Chanterelle mushrooms come in many different species and are found throughout much of the Northern Hemisphere.
These funnel-shaped mushrooms have ruffly caps, making them similar in shape to petunia flowers. What’s more, most chanterelles come in bright colors, such as yellow, orange, red, and blue–further enhancing the flower-like appearance.
These edible mushrooms are quite tasty–they have a mildly sweet and earthy flavor similar to apricots. Their sweet aroma provides yet another similarity with flowers.
That said, it is fairly easy to identify chanterelle mushrooms by the hard gill-like ridges on the undersides of their caps and running down their stems. Their stems and caps are also the same color, unlike most flowers, which have green stems.
2. Pink Oysters
Oyster mushrooms are some of the most common mushrooms in the world, and pink oysters are some of the most beautiful.
These large, easily-cultivated mushrooms tend to grow in layers and have the appearance of sea plants or coral. They are pale pink in color, as you might have guessed from the name.
When they are young and have not fully opened up, they look strikingly like pink peonies or large rosebuds.
These mushrooms are edible, though they don’t have the sweet, fruity aroma of chanterelle mushrooms–instead, they smell mildly seafood-like. The cooked mushrooms, however, have a mild woodsy taste that blends well with a variety of flavors.
Check out this cool time lapse video of pink oyster mushrooms growing:
3. Amethyst Deceivers
These unique mushrooms are found primarily in temperate forests, though they also grow in some tropical and subtropical regions.
As their name suggests, they are a deep amethyst-purple in color–especially when young. Their color fades as they age and become more weathered.
The entire mushroom, including the stem, has this same purple color. The cap tends to curl upward, giving it a ruffly appearance similar to flowers such as carnations.
These mushrooms are edible, but care must be taken when eating those that are wild-gathered, as they may absorb any arsenic in their environment.
Earthstars belong to the family Geastraceae, which is made up of various mushroom species.
Many of the mushrooms within this species have one notable characteristic: the membrane surrounding the main fruiting body splits open and takes on a starlike flower shape at maturity.
In the midst of the “petals”, the fruiting body appears like a large, bulbous flower center.
These interesting mushrooms are primarily white, gray, and beige in appearance, so they lack the vibrant colors that would make them look even more like flowers.
That said, their flower-like shape is a unique phenomenon to behold.
5. Texas Stars
Texas stars are extremely rare mushrooms: they are only found in isolated parts of Texas as well as Japan.
These mushrooms tend to look like cigars as they sprout from the ground–they are slender, hollow, and brown. At maturity, they split open and divide into several segments, which curl down and take on the appearance of flower petals.
These mushrooms are orange-brown in color and have a soft, velvety texture. Because they are so rare, not much is known about them yet.
6. Fragile Dapperlings
This mushroom is extremely widespread, being found in most parts of the world.
Fragile dapperlings have tender yellow-white stems and flat, round, dainty little caps. They are so small and fragile-looking that, upon first glance, it would be easy to confuse them with delicate white flowers.
These mushrooms are common on forest floors as they feed off of dead plant matter.
This is not a single type of mushroom, but rather a large family comprising around 500 individual species.
Though most members of the family are small, dull, and unmemorable, a few species have bright colors and shapes that give them a flower-like appearance.
For example, the Marasmius haematocephalus mushrooms are pink or purple and ruffly. Marasmius tageticolor are similar in color but also have pink or white stripes accenting their caps.
These pretty little mushrooms tend to grow in clusters on dead wood in forested areas. Though you may initially suspect they are flowers, a closer inspection will reveal that they look incredibly similar to delicate little parasols.
With thousands of mushrooms in the world, it isn’t surprising that some of them would look like flowers in one way or another. Some of these pretty floral-mimicking fungi include pink oysters, amethyst deceivers, earthstars, fragile dapperlings, and chanterelles.