Mushroom man on the hunt for fungi

A fungi hunter from Lincoln will be heading to Chambers Farm Wood this month in search of mushrooms and toadstools.

Ken Rowland from Skellingthorpe, near Lincoln, is the county’s finest fungi hunter, making thousands of sightings in the past 40 years.

On October 22, he will take visitors through the 900-acre woodland near Wragby to help them spot different fungi species.

Rowland used to be Lincolnshire’s fungi recorder, managing  58,000 records and collating reports on fungi across the county.

There are around 4,500 different kinds of fungi in the county, according to Rowland, who is also president of the Lincolnshire Naturalist’s Union.

He believes Chambers Farm Wood is the best place to look for different mushrooms and toadstools.

Rowland said: “On a good day we can spot up to 100 different species, but you need to be very careful because only a handful of these will be edible. Others can be deadly poisonous, so beware!

“Fungi are totally unpredictable which is part of their fascination. They can appear and disappear very quickly and new discoveries are always possible.

“It would be great to see younger folk taking a deeper interest. Learning how to identify species is something best learned from others out in the woods, rather than just simply from a book.”

People can expect to find colourful fungi such as the classic Fly Agaric, the red and white toadstools, or Plums and Custard, a red and yellow specimen.

The walk will take two hours, starting at 10am at Chambers Farm Wood Centre, off the B1202 Wragby to Bardney Road.

It costs £5 per person, and booking is essential. Good footwear is also required. Call 01623 822447 to book a spot on the walk.

Source: Forestry Commision