Life Science

Foraging with New York City’s mushroom hunters

For members of the New York Mycological Society, all mushrooms are good — but some are better when left off your dinner plate

March 15, 2019
Mushrooms pile on top of one another. Most are brown, and some aren't clearly visible.
Every Saturday, after collecting whatever mushrooms they can find, the New York Mycological Society gathers their bounty and tries to identify each specimen.

Every weekend, just outside New York City, the New York Mycological Society gathers to forage for a natural bounty — mushrooms.  Not only do they seek out (and find) varieties that pair well with butter and garlic, but also those better left alone altogether, like the aptly named “white death angel.”

“We don’t subscribe to the ‘good mushroom, bad mushroom’ philosophy,” says Paul Sadowski, the secretary of the New York Mycological Society. “All mushrooms are good mushrooms.” 

Reporter Isobel Whitcomb joined mushroom hunters to Tallman Mountain State Park, just outside New York City,  last fall to see what a shroom obsession is about — and maybe bring home an elusive ‘hen of the woods’ or maitake mushroom.

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