Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Amanita Muscaria

Among the large number of species of mushrooms. Amanita muscaria (fly agaric) has received considerable notice because of its striking appearance, color, and the fact that it has considerable hallucinogenic properties.  Supposedly the shamans of the Chukchi tribe in Siberia used it in their rituals, and unsuspecting individuals sampling this attractive mushroom growing in the woods got more than they bargained for in terms of major disturbing hallucinations as well as poisoning!

This is a dangerous hallucinogen, and should not under any circumstances be ingested due to its toxicity!  Supposedly, parboiling it sufficiently makes it safe, but I wouldn't risk it.

The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics depicted it on a postage stamp before it separated into Russia, Ukraine, and the other nations formerly of the USSR.

In Walt Disney's Fantasia, the sequence of the Chinese dance from The Nutcracker Suite utilized mushrooms colored suspiciously like Amanita muscaria as the dancers.  This part of it was non-creepy, unlike Night on Bald Mountain and The Sorcerer's Apprentice.

It is also occasionally depicted as a place for fairies or even toads to rest.  I find this to be a particularly charming image and thought I would share it:


bakku-shan said...

That's a pretty mushroom. It's a shame it's poisonous.

Big Sky Heidi said...

I like the fairy.

Linda Kay said...

Angel, thanks for the info on the mushrooms. I don't think I've ever seen one this color, except as you have described it. The fairy on the mushroom is adorable!

MarkD60 said...

I have had mixed experiences with mushrooms. Back in the old days before the internet it was try it now, and see what it does. Nowadays, everything you look up on the internet is bad for your, so I probably would try it anyway, if I was who I was back then.

TexWisGirl said...

they really are beauties.

Mike said...

So are we going mushroom hunting this weekend?

Bilbo said...

I love mushrooms, preferably when they're sauteed in butter and served with a nice medium-rare steak, garlic mashed potatoes, and a glass of cabernet sauvignon.

beach lad said...

we call them 'toad stools'

i'm all the way with Bilbo.

Cloudia said...

Wonderful survey!

ALOHA from Honolulu
=^..^= . <3

Mike said...

And then I found this today -

eViL pOp TaRt said...

Mike: At the store!

bakku-shan: It's just for looks, not for tasting.

Heidi and Linda Kay: Thank you!

Bilbo: A burgundy or chianti would do too.

beach lad: We use that term too; especially for suspicious mushrooms or those that pop up after rain,