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Amethyst horned (Clavulina amethystina, clavulina amethyst) in appearance is completely different from standard mushrooms. The unusual beauty of the coral body is simply amazing. The representative of living nature lacks caps and legs, and the fruiting body is represented by branched tubes. The closest relatives, surprisingly, are chanterelles.
Where do amethyst horns grow
Mushrooms with an amazing name are common in temperate climates. They grow in moist deciduous and coniferous forests. But most often they are found in birch groves. They prefer rotten tree debris, bark, damp moss, or lingonberry meadows.
Clavulin is located alone or forms spit-shaped colonies. Therefore, harvesting is easy, from one small meadow you can fill a whole basket.
Fruiting begins at the end of August and lasts until October, when other mushrooms are already leaving.
What do amethyst horns look like?
This representative belongs to conditionally edible mushrooms of the Clavulin genus. To learn how to distinguish it, you need to read the description.
The fruiting body is represented by horn-like ramifications, hence the name. Height - 2-7 cm, width - about 4 cm. Vertical ramifications go to the base, so from a distance it seems that coral bushes have blossomed on the ground.
The color palette of clavulin is varied. There are lilac or brownish-lilac specimens. Young fruiting bodies are distinguished by smooth, cylindrical branches. In a mature mushroom, they are wrinkled (longitudinal grooves appear), with denticles or rounded tops.
Among the horned amethyst there are representatives with and without legs. They are so short that it seems as if the fruiting bodies are sessile. The dense base of the stem is lighter in color than the fruiting body.
The mushroom attracts with dense, fleshy, sometimes crunchy pulp. At the very beginning of development, it is white, but gradually changes color. In the old mushroom, it is exactly the same as the surface. Fruiting bodies do not differ in organoleptic characteristics. In other words, they do not have a specific aroma that is perceived by the human senses.
Spore powder of white color, has the shape of a wide ellipse, ball. The surface is smooth. Dried spores acquire a lilac hue, do not differ in smell and taste.
Is it possible to eat amethyst horns
Amethyst horns of unusual shape and color, but quite edible, they belong to the fourth category. But few Russians risk eating such a forest product. But Bulgarians, Czechs and Germans are very fond of amethyst horns, they can even eat them raw.
Young fruit bodies can be eaten while they are still smooth, without wrinkles.
Taste qualities of amethyst horned mushroom
As a rule, forest representatives of the mushroom kingdom are often found by their specific smell. Amethyst horny does not differ in taste or aroma. Such fruiting bodies are not for everybody. They taste a little bitter.
Like any mushroom, the amethyst horn has its counterparts. And some of them are not harmless.
One of them is clavaria pale brown. They are similar in shape and outwardly, but you can distinguish a double due to a pungent smell, reminiscent of a radish. In addition, clavaria grows only in moss, inedible.
Inexperienced mushroom pickers can also confuse Ramaria with a beautiful amethyst horn. You need to be careful, because this species is classified as inedible and poisonous. Drinking the straws can lead to bowel upset.
From August to October, mushroom pickers begin a quiet hunt for the last autumn mushrooms, similar to amethyst coral bushes. Cylindrical twigs are very fragile, so you need to pick them carefully. Fold separately. Use a sharp knife to cut.
Oddly enough, but the Russians are little known amethyst horned, although it grows in many regions. They are simply not paid attention to, despite the fact that the horns are conditionally edible. Most often, fruiting bodies are dried, boiled and sometimes stewed. Do not use it separately, but add a little to other types. Mushroom soup turns out to be very tasty.
Attention! Experienced mushroom pickers never fry or preserve colored fruit bodies because of the specific bitter taste, which practically disappears only when stewing or boiling.
Amethyst horned - a mushroom of unusual shape and color. The fruiting purple body is quite edible, but without the specific mushroom aroma and taste, for an amateur. Apparently, therefore, they do not pay attention to amethyst mushrooms, preferring the well-known boletus, boletus, boletus, milk mushrooms and other fruit bodies.