mushrooms · Nature Academy of the Berkshires

Puffball Mushrooms

Puffball mushrooms are fun–gi. There are several kinds of the puffball mushrooms, but they all belong in the division Basidiomycota.

You can tell puffball mushrooms from other mushrooms because they look like puffballs and don’t have gills. Instead they keep the spores in the cap. When the spores are ready to be released the cap gets a hole in it, or it dries and becomes brittle and the spores get forced out sometimes by the mere force of rain drops falling on it or and animal or someone steps on it or squishes it. They are fun to squish.

Most puffballs are edible, the giant puffballs being the best to eat. These mushroom taste okay, they don’t have much flavor and need lots of butter. Some folks don’t like them because they have a spongy texture. But when I find them, I think of it as free food.