Saturday, September 8, 2012

INDIGO MILK MUSHROOM: South Carolina magic!

Indigo Milk Mushroom  - Columbia, South Carolina
photograph by Laurie Schechter Rimon
(no editing, no color adjustment)
This  amazing indigo-hued mushroom has many names but until I arrived in South Carolina earlier today I was totally unfamiliar  even with its existence. But when the mercury dancing around the mid 90's and the sultry southern air is heavy with humidity things happen quickly in the world of fantastic fungi: a blue mushroom appears under the live oaks and loblolly pines.
 Lactarius indigo, also known as the Indigo Milk Cap, the Indigo Lactarius, the Blue Milk Mushroom and the Indigo Milk Mushroom is a shroom I will never forgot. A bit of on-line research says  it is edible and tasty and one site even says it tastes like blueberries.
I think I will stay with Michigan's Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore for my blueberry hunting and eat things that are blueberries, not just taste like them  In the world of mushrooms, thinking something is edible is not good enough for me. Nor should it be for you. But with marshmallow-fluffy clouds morphing into thunderheads, and rain on the way in the summer-scorched midlands of South Carolina, I'll be back in the not so wilds of my sister's urban lawn in the hills of  Columbia to hunt for more of these most beautiful blue mushrooms at dawn.
One MUST be absolutely sure of  identification before eating ANY mushroom!



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