Most people associate mushrooms and toadstools with autumn, and rightly so given the abundance and variety to be found then. But spring also has plenty of fungi to offer with seasonal delights that are only found at this time of year.

137701Above: St George’s Mushroom Calocybe gambosa is an edible species that, in the past at least, usually appeared around 23rd April, the eponymous saint’s day. It is a grassland species and where you find one, you usually find several. Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

139753Above: The Black Morel Morchella elata can reach a size of 15cm and grows in a wide range of wooded habitats, often beside tracks. Although usually vertical in growth form, it sometimes appears at a jaunty angle. Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

137640Above: The rather delicate and unimaginatively-named Semi-free Morel Mitrophora semilibra grows in grassland and woodland, and is most regularly spotted in hedgerows. Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

139286Above: The False Morel Gyromitra esculenta grows on sandy soil, usually under conifers. It is not edible. Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

103907Above: The Jelly Ear Auricularia auricula-judae appears as clusters of ear-like fruit bodies and grows primarily on Elder. Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

138898Above: The Chicken of The Woods Laetiporous sulphureus is a long-lasting bracket fungus that first appears in spring, when it is at its most colourful. Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

137662Above: The Vinegar Cup Helvella acetabulum grows on the ground in woodland on calcareous soil. The word ‘acetabulum’ relates to an Ancient Greek dining vessel used to hold vinegar, one whose broad goblet shape this species resembles. Paul Sterry/Nature Photographers Ltd

Recommended Reading:


Collins Complete British Mushrooms and Toadstools by Paul Sterry and Barry Hughes.