Trooping Funnel - Clitocybe geotropa

Main features

  • Fruits Autumn to Winter

  • Found in troops, rings and partial rings in woodland and under or near trees

  • Smells slightly of almonds

  • Cap surface cream or buff

  • Cap starts off convex with a broad umbo, then flattens and finall becomes funnel-shaped

  • Cap is 10-20cm wide

  • Sturdy, cream, cylindrical stem 2-6cm in diameter with swollen base

  • Has no stem ring/skirt 

  • Stem is fibrous and 10-25cm tall

  • Flesh is cream to white

  • Crowded, decurrent and broad gills are cream in colour

  • Spore print is white

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Trooping Funnel - Clitocybe geotropa

Edible mushroom - novice 

Other common names: Trooping Funnel Cap, Giant Funnel, Monk's Head, Rickstone Funnel Cap

 

Scientific name meaning: Clitocybe is from the Greek Klitos meaning slope. Geotropa is also Greek in original and has two parts meaning earth and turn/direction

Season - when will I find it? Autumn to winter
 

Habitat - where will I find it? In woodland and underneath or near trees

Description - what does it look like? 

Growth: The Trooping Funnel is a saprobic mushroom found in troops, rings and partial rings in woodland and underneath trees

Cap: Cream to buff in colour, the caps start off convex with a prominent central umbo (bump). The caps flatten out before becoming funnel-shaped and reach 10-20cm in diameter. The umbo is still present in the central depression of the cap until in becomes very mature

Gills: The deeply decurrent (running down the stem) gills are cream coloured, crowded and broad

Flesh: Cream/white

Stem: The exceptionally tall stem, fibrous can reach 25cm or taller. It is 2-6cm with and very cylindrical down to the base, where it often is swollen. It has no stem ring and cream to buff coloured

Smell: Slightly of almonds

Spore colour: White

Possible lookalikes Could be confused with the seriously poisonous Livid Pinkgill (Entoloma sinuatum), which has a slightly unpleasant smell and gills that turn pink with age. Also, the Fleecy Milkcap (Lactarius vellereus) is similar in appearance, but this has no umbo, oozes milk/latex from its gills when damaged and the stem is unlikely to reach 10cm tall or more. Could also be confused with other Clitocybe species, including deadly poisonous species. To avoid these, pick specimens that have caps over 15cm in diameter and stems that are over 20cm tall

Use as food This mushroom should be cooked. The caps are excellent fried and retain their texture and size. They have a rich, meaty flavour. The stems are tough, but can be dried and powdered to make an excellent stock powder

Use in herbal medicine Has been shown to have some antimicrobial activity under laboratory conditions

If you are suffering from any ailment or need medical advice, please see your General Practitioner

Hazards There are some guides that suggest this mushrooms cause gastric intolerance in some people. However, the author knows of no known cases. Regardless, it is always wise to do a tolerance test with new foods. 

This mushroom often grows near roads. Mushrooms can bioaccumulate toxins, including heavy metals, so roadside harvesting should be avoided

Other uses Has shown potential as a natural antibiotic in tomato and potato plants

Importance to other species Provides food for a the larvae of a number of fly species. Worth remembering when harvesting for eating!

Always stay safe when foraging. You need to be 100% sure of your identification, 100% sure that your foraged item is edible, and 100% sure that you are not allergic to it (it is good practice to always try a small amount of any new food you are consuming). If in doubt, leave it out!