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Not sure if this is a reishi or a hemlock varnish self.

Found on the ground at a campsite between oaks and hostas. Campsite is north bank of the grand river, Ashtabula county, Ohio. Forest is oaks, maples, hemlocks.

White micro pores, brown spore print. 

Any ideas?




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Ok, the long version.

my son is obsessed with foraging. He found a chicken of the woods on property and it really turned it up the last few weeks. Over the weekend we were at the family friends permanent camp site, he found these, thinks they’re reishi’s and he should save them. I did save them, but I’m still not letting him make himself mushroom tea because I really don’t know what this is.

Im in wine country, between Cleveland and Erie. Around here, there are ‘camp grounds’ where the city people spend their weekends. Truth, they’re fancy trailer parks with golf carts and lots of booze. Not not my scene, but it was a memorial service. These mushroom where NOT on wood, they were in a rediculously compacted flower bed between two sites, just sticking up out of the ground about 2.5 apart. The bed had a few scraggly hostas, and there were 3 oak trees within 6-10ft of the mushrooms. 
The trees looked healthy and alive, it’s possible they came from surface roots, I guess, but I couldn’t see any (I made a point to look, I was told reshis need wood), and even the hostas (which don’t die) were having a hard time. The surrounding woods are oaks, maples, and hemlocks, but a decent 30 yrds from this spot. They were stuck to the ground fairly well. 

Does that help?


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I think these polypores were likely growing from buried wood, ie. old roots. In my experience Ganoderma curtisii is more likely to grow like this (as opposed to G. tsugae or G. sessile). G. curtisii grows on hardwood, often oak or maple. There are differing opinions on whether or not the native North American "varnished Ganoderma" species may be considered Reishi. My understanding is that both G. curtisii and G. tsugae are chemically similar to the rue Asian Reishi. I have used a double-extract tincture made from G. tsugae; couple drops in a glass of water. However, the tea made from this species is bitter and causes minor stomach issues for me. 

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