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Lion's Mane with Brown Tips on Spines

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Found this fungus I believe to be a lion's mane yesterday in SW VA.

I would appreciate advice on it's edibility in it's current state.

It's my first find of this variety and I'm excited to make lion's mane "crab" cakes, but unfortunately, this one looks past it's prime for that purpose. I say that because of the brownish tint, especially on the tips of the spines. Let me know your thoughts.

Actually, any information on this mushroom would be appreciated as I am curious about many things. For instance, Do the tips start to brown like this because of the freezing temperatures at night? Or is it a sign of old age? Does this mean it is rotting? What is typical season for this variety in SW VA? Will a fresh one replace this old one at the dance spot on the tree next season? Does it enhance/hinder regrowth next season by removing this old one? I assume it's old... Let me know if I'm wrong.

Thanks so much!


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Don’t know about wild lions mane, but the ones I grow will grow back from the spot I cut it from. 

I would say that’s probably too old to eat.  But I’d check it next fall for sure.  That appears to be a nice size one.  

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No. On grow bags. Pasteurized 6 more bags today.  Will do two more then inoculate them tomorrow.  Yield from the first set of bags was just over five pounds.  Started those mid November 60044131-9352-4CCE-9319-24BB5D60574B.thumb.jpeg.233eeabd68624a9bd3cc170011d8e813.jpeg

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I would say it’s a WELL past prime Hericium(aka lions mane). I’d leave it be and check back at that location next year but a few weeks earlier

Nice find !! Some people go their whole life foraging without ever finding one in the wild. 

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  • 2 months later...

Brown can be a sign of dryness or significant over maturation of the mushroom fruiting bodies, keep humidity high for pinning, keep it above 60% for fruiting and you should be fine. Airflow can dry fruiting bodies, if your fruits feel or look dry, they are.They have dark spots or have become darker. – Once lion's mushrooms grow dark spots, it's a sign that they're starting to go bad. Quickly use them already as soon as you can or just get rid of them.

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