Step 6

Choose one option from each numbered pair or set


The mushroom resembles a sphere, globe or ball in general shape. It may or may not have a short stem. The mushroom may also look like a globe or ball sitting on a star shaped leathery base. It may be growing on wood, on the ground or even underground, and may have a distinctive smell.
The mushroom resembles broccoli or coral in shape, or a frozen waterfall, or a pile of leaves. It is fleshy, not woody or jelly-like. It may grow on the ground or on the wood. Most common colors are yellow, white, pink or red, purple-gray, or yellow-tan. It may have teeth, pores, or no features (smooth).
The mushroom resembles a shelf or a horse-hoof and is often growing on wood. It is often woody or leathery in texture, and most often has PORES (they may be very tiny, or irregular or eroded) and sometimes TEETH on the underside. GO TO POLYPORES
If you have a shelf-like mushroom that is fleshy and/or has GILLS,


6d. The mushroom has a texture like jelly or gelatin, or it liquefies when you touch it. It usually looks wet, and is shaped like a gumdrop, or a brain, or an irregular blob. It is often growing on wood and may be yellow, brown, pink or some shade of gray. If your jelly fungus has teeth,
see 5b.

Otherwise, GO TO JELLY FUNGI, slime molds


The mushroom resembles a club and is finger-sized or smaller. The top may be larger than the base. ALL capless, thin cylindrical or finger-shaped fungi key out here.
The mushroom resembles a tiny birds nest, and usually has 1 or more –eggs” in the nest. It may grow on wood or dirt, and is always less than 1 inch across. Immature units may have a fibrous covering over the top of the nest.
The mushroom has a cup shape. Some may have a stem and look like a goblet or wine glass, others are more like a bowl. The inside of the cup may be red, orange, or yellowish, but it is most often brown. The flesh is usually brittle. Most species are no bigger than a quarter.

6h. The mushroom resembles a wrinkly brain on a stem, has brittle flesh, and is often found in or near the forest. Some types grow on wood, others on ground.


Go back to Mushroom Key Start

©The Western Montana Mycological Association