An up-to-date, comprehensive and brilliantly illustrated book on fungi foraging in Britain and Europe. It covers every known edible species, and all the poisonous groups, as well as a few other extremely common ones and a handful that are of interest for other reasons. Perfect for all ability levels – from an absolute beginner to an experienced fungi forager who'd like to become an expert. Each edible species are ranked according to its difficulty/danger level, so beginners can start with the easiest and safe ones while experienced foragers can learn how to safely forage for much trickier species that other mushroom foraging guides leave out.
The 2018 hardback version includes an index with vernacular and scientific species names that is not included in the 2016 paperback version.
Part I: Fungi and foraging
1. What are fungi?
2. How to identify fungi
3. Where and when to find fungi
4. Safety and equipment
5. Culture and laws
7. Edible fungi
Part II: The fungi
How to use this guide
The only full-time fungi-foraging professional in England. Geoff Dann is an ex-software engineer, who rode the upsurge in interest in mushroom foraging in the UK to turn a long-term passion into a career. In addition to his popular mushroom walks, teaching people about edible and toxic fungi as they come across them in the wild, he also presents guest slots on television and writes articles.
"Edible Mushrooms is a fascinating and wise companion on the journey into the extraordinary, and delicious, world of fungi. Come Autumn, it will accompany every foray I make into the woods, and my life, and my frying pan, will be vastly richer because of it."
– Rob Hopkins, founder of the Transition movement
"This is a must-have guide for anyone, who like me, likes to try edible fungi and wants to extend their knowledge beyond the very commonly known species. Towards the back is a high quality photographic index of all the different taxonomic groups followed by a comprehensive description of each species within that group. It covers 'botanical' description, smell, taste, habitat, gill type, distribution and season and whether edible or not, as well as listing similar species. But before we get to that, the author guides you in detail through everything you need to know in preparation of foraging proper and covers the life cycle of fungi and their evolution and ecology. The chapter on Identifying fungi clearly covers all the characteristics to look out for when foraging: cap shape, colour, peeling, surface type, as well as the different types of spore bearing structures and there are good quality labelled pictures and drawings to demonstrate the differences. Poisonous fungi are also included in approximate order of danger with advice on how to avoid picking the wrong ones. There is some technical terminology but it is put across in a concise way. The book covers safety and equipment, culture, science and ethics of foraging, the law and a code of conduct for mushroom collectors as well as methods of preserving, preparing and cooking fungi. We just need a recipe book now [...]"
– Penny Jones, Propagator, Westonbirt, The National Arboretum
"A fantastic addition to any foragers book collection, brilliantly laid out with great photos. Geoff know his stuff and puts it across in an easily accessible manner. This will be an ever present on my fungi forages!"
– Gary Johnston, Bushcrafter at Jack Raven Bushcraft
"Bursting with quality photos and great information, as well as successfully reflecting the author's stated goal of striving to achieve the "balance between caution and adventure that a forager needs", this book is an absolute must for foragers, mycophiles and mycophobes alike – both of the human species, but, like fungi, sometimes hard o tell apart. Indeed, such a lovely book, written with engaging enthusiasm, can only help people become increasingly fascinated by fungi and the natural world more generally: A winning situation for all species concerned, be they fungi, plants, or animals, including the human animal. Put the book in your rucksack, head outside, and let it guide you on safe but fantastical, fun, and mind, heart, and stomach expanding fungal adventures."
– Fergus Drennan aka Fergus the Forager
"A brief flick thorough this book is enough to inform even the passing mushroom enthusiast that it has been written not only by a master of mycology but buy someone who deeply loves fungus, its habitats and its quirks. Good photography, excellent and useful descriptive text. All in all a very good guide to UK fungi."
– Tim Maddams , Chef, Cookery Teacher, Writer, Presenter