Mondays, September 20 – October 18 – Boston Mycological Club Fall 2010 Mushroom Classes

The Boston Mycological Club is pleased to announce its lineup for fall classes.  Designed for beginners, all are welcome.  Classes start at 7 pm on consecutive Mondays in the Harvard Herbaria, at the end of Divinity Avenue (Harvard Square T stop), and you may choose to come to one class or the entire series.  Admission charges for non-members of the BMC are $15 for any single class, $40 for any three, $45 for four, or $50 for all five. Member prices are $10, $25, $30 and $35.  Note that if non-members attend all the classes, they may become Club members for only $5 extra (what a bargain!)  Non-members are also invited to the Sunday forays that precede these classes, and are welcome to stay after class for I.D. sessions.

On September 20, Erin Page Blanchard will speak on “A Beginner’s Guide to Identifying Fungi.” Whether you’re collecting edibles or just enjoying another part of the natural world, putting a name to what you see is important for both pleasure and knowledge.  It may take expertise or time to fill in genus and species, but we can all learn to classify mushrooms into groups by visual characteristics, and this tells us where to look next.  Erin is from California, where she has been an official identifier for many fungal events, and moderates a message board for mushroom hunting.  As a consultant to wild food businesses, and part of a team identifying Yosemite fungi, she is the ideal person to lead us into the fungal maze.

September 27 brings “Identifying Boletes” with Noah Siegel.  Noah is a nationally known award-winning photographer and mushroom identifier.  He is co-President of the Monadnock Mushroomers Unlimited in Keene, New Hampshire, and is a Trustee for the North East Mycological Federation.  Noah has hunted mushrooms throughout North America as well as in New Zealand and Australia.  He’ll host his Annual Fungus Fair on September 19 in Athol, MA from 10 – 5 at 100 Main Street.

October 4 and October 18 feature George Davis.  He will speak on “Identifying White and Light Spored Gilled Mushrooms” and “Identifying Dark Spored Gilled Mushrooms.” It’s difficult to overestimate the importance of accurate identification for mushroom hunters.  Not only is it a fascinating puzzle, but it’s the difference between a delicious meal and a delicious meal followed by a night in the ER.  Identification is tricky enought that we devote a Monday night to it after every single Sunday foray.  Luckily, the BMC has experts to help.  George and Karen Davis are the people we’re most likely to turn to for assistance, theaching us how to figure out what we’ve found.

Finally, on October 25, enjoy “All The Rest,” with an instructor to be announced.  Polypores, puffballs, truffles, and all the other weird and wonderful fungi that don’t fit into the above categories, including many scrumptious edibles, will be examined.  You may pay at the door, or send a check made payable to BMC to Marcia Jacob, 118 Presidents Land, Quincy, MA 02169.  If you have questions, email Marcia at, or call her at 617-471-1093.  You may also contact (617-964-2992) or (617-976-7252).  Photo below by Richard Seaman.