Deliquescence

“The process by which a substance absorbs moisture from the atmosphere until it dissolves in the absorbed water and forms a solution” (Encyclopedia Britannica)

Go on then, deliquesce, you know that you want to.

Glistening Ink Cap

This is a post about the Glistening Ink Cap,Β Coprinellus micaceus.

I have two very interesting things to show and tell you about the Glistening Ink Cap.

It Glistens..

Glistening Ink Cap…and it is an Ink Cap.

Glistening Ink CapSo starting with the glistening. This mushroom is covered in tiny reflective beads that give it’s name.

Glistening Ink CapThey are the remnants of a veil that once covered and protected the young mushroom. As the mushroom grows the veil breaks up leaving little reflective particles..

Glistening Ink CapI have an excellent book in front of me, “Mushrooms and other fungi of Great Britain and Europe” by Roger Phillips and he describes this veil as white and powdery.

Wikiwotsit says it is, ” a fine layer of reflective mica-like cells.”

I can only say, “this is what it looks like.”

Glistening Ink Cap

Glistening Ink Cap

Glistening Ink CapI have got some absolutely tiny little specimens in front of me and none of them show a complete and unbroken veil. I am just assuming that it is a veil for the purpose of protection because that is the only reason that I know for a mushroom to have a veil. (and some books do say that is what it is)

So that is the Glistening, now lets get on to the deliquescence.

Another name for this phenomenon is autodigestion. I don’t like to think that this mushroom eats itself, I think that it deliquescifies (Why is that word underlined in red?) but then I am a romantic.

The young caps start of with white gills.

Glistening Ink Cap

Glistening Ink CapAs the mushroom ages they darken.

Glistening Ink Cap

Glistening Ink Cap

Glistening Ink CapIn death the gills change to a black liquid and it is almost as if the caps were full of ink. πŸ™‚

Glistening Ink CapIt does get all over you if you play with them at this stage.

The Glistening Ink Cap is edible. You have to get to them before they start to deliquesce and cooking stops that process.

Your window of opportunity is fairly narrow.

Yesterday at 5 pm.
Glistening Ink Cap

Today 10 am.Glistening Ink CapThey would have been good yesterday.

This Ink Cap is saprobic, it feeds on decaying wood. Sometimes that decaying wood is buried underground and it appears to spring from Β the grass.

That is my post about the interesting Glistening Ink Cap.

Glistening Ink Cap

 

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29 thoughts on “Deliquescence”

  1. This is a great post on mushrooms with amazing photographs and detailed descriptions. You have done others I’ve seen and I keep on appreciating and discovering your varied talents.
    Thank you very much for following and opening the door to your amazing world. Eddie

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    1. Thank you for the comment Becky πŸ™‚ Woods are wonderful places, if you want help identifying stuff then I’m your man. Nature can fix stuff, I think. πŸ™‚ Bear with me. Well, I hope there isn’t a Bear with me, Bears are bloomin’ dangerous πŸ˜€ That is one of my best jokes. I don’t tell my best ones to just anyone. πŸ˜€

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      1. Haha! I’ll come back to that as soon as I am able to walk around in woods again πŸ™‚ actually I have a master’s degree in organic biology but you see I slept in most of my botanics classes haha if we combine our knowledge perhaps we can make a great team in identifying stuff!

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  2. I absolutely enjoy reading your articles. Mushrooms are my favorites, I love to find a new mushroom I haven’t seen before. When it happens I always hope that it is unknown to the world, and I am always wrong πŸ™‚ Thank you for the great reading and images!

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    1. Thank you Inese πŸ™‚ I always hope that I have found a rare one, sometimes I have and I might post my Orange Grisette on a dull day. I get more excited by what is under my feet today. I saw the first catkins on the Hazel today. The “Lambs Tails” that we will sing about in spring. Lovely. πŸ™‚

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  3. I occasionally use Mitchell Beazley’s guide to assist on Mushroom ID. Not sure I’d be happy to touch one, but you must know what you’re doing. I’d be cautious.

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    1. Thanks Stephen πŸ™‚ I am very cautious about what I eat, there is a lot of poisonous stuff out there but it is plants more than fungi. There are only a few fungi that can kill you and they are rare but when they do you are stuffed. Statistically the most dangerous thing around here is local residents,, they kill more people than fungi, poisonous plants, adders and Wild Boar put together, with knobs on. They are also responsible for thousands of violent crimes every year. Still I am not afraid to go into the village but I keep my wits about me. I am never afraid of the jungle. πŸ™‚

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    1. Thank you Judith πŸ™‚ Quite frankly, the only reason that I am in a relationship with this mushroom is because it includes the word deliquesensce but I do like it. I like it because it has been icky in my world for ten years and I know the ick.

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  4. What did one glistening ink cap say to the other? “The minute she peeked out from her veil with that sparkle in her eye and I knew we were in for a night of deliquescence.”

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  5. Great mushroom shots and lots of info. The mushroom season is here too and lots of folk are out foraging ! A popular Spanish pastime here in the Sierra. We ate and survived a Gallipierni yesterday! Others have now ….deliquesced. Great word!

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