lectures Archives

Greg Marley – Foraging for Mushrooms; Learn your toxic species! – Friday, April 15, 7pm (Eastern time)

Greg Marley

Greg Marley

There is a surging interest in wild mushrooms and foraging for edibles. The Northeast’s abundant mushrooms offer a supply of locally sourced, tasty food. Many people are taking to the woods in search of edible mushrooms to eat and share with their families. Unfortunately, The Northern New England Poison Center has seen a corresponding increase in calls involving poisonous mushrooms concerning people experiencing a range of unpleasant and sometimes serious symptoms. Anyone collecting mushrooms for food must learn the toxic species with the same enthusiasm as the edible ones. This presentation will explore the Northeast’s poisonous mushrooms and the common edible ones that may resemble them, concentrating on recent upturns in poisoning cases.

Greg Marley has been collecting, studying, eating, growing and teaching mushrooms for almost 50 years. He spreads his love of mushrooms to hundreds through walks, talks and classes across the New England. Marley is the author of Mushrooms for Health; Medicinal Secrets of Northeastern Fungi, (Downeast Books , 2009) and the award-winning Chanterelle Dreams, Amanita Nightmares; The Love, Lore and Mystique of Mushrooms, (Chelsea Green, 2010). As a volunteer mushroom identification consultant to Poison Centers across New England he provides expertise in mushroom poisoning cases. When not mushrooming, Marley works as a mental health clinician and consultant specializing in suicide prevention.

The lecture takes place Friday, April 15, 7pm (Eastern time)

William Padilla-Brown – North American Cordyceps Culture – Friday, April 8, 2022 at 7:00pm

William Padilla-Brown

William Padilla-Brown

In 2015, Cordyceps cultivation was unknown to the public, and the small groups of mycologists who were aware of Cordyceps in English-speaking countries did not know how to cultivate Cordyceps efficiently. Shortly after, William cultured the first Cordyceps to be publicly cultivated in the United States by MycoSymbiotics and Terrestrial Fungi. In Winter of 2016-17, William taught the first Cordyceps class in the USA and published the first English literature on Cordyceps cultivation. Since then, public accessibility and availability of Cordyceps in English-speaking countries has grown. This one-hour informational class will take a deep dive into what Cordyceps culture looks like in our country now, from growing to consuming.

William Padilla-Brown: Founder of MycoSymbiotics, William Padilla-Brown is a social entrepreneur, citizen scientist, mycologist, amateur ‘phychologist’, urban shaman, writer, you-tube vlogger, contributing editor for Fungi mag, researcher, poet, and father. William holds Permaculture Design Certificates acquired through Susquehanna Permaculture and NGOZI. William is leading the country in the field of Cordyceps cultivation.

The lecture will take place Friday, April 8, 2022 at 7:00PM

James Scott – On the Trail of the Whiskey Fungus – Friday, April 1, 2022 at 7pm (Eastern Time)

James Scott

James Scott

Despite that distillation has been practiced for over 3,000 years, only in the past few centuries have social wealth and agricultural bounty coincided to allow the stockpiling of spirits, with enhanced flavour and aroma characteristics accompanied by increased value as the emergent side benefits. The main downside to spirit aging has been the loss of alcohol over time to evapouration – the so-called ‘Angels’ Share’ – long known to perfume the neighbourhoods around barrel houses. The Angels’ Share, however, is not just for the angels.

Twenty years ago I answered a call from a large distillery to investigate a curious phenomenon of blackening on the outsides of homes, traffic signs, and patio furniture in areas near whiskey barrel houses. Incredulous at first, the unexpected journey that followed revealed a beautiful and physiologically intricate group of fungi that have long been hiding in plain sight, garnered popular press coverage at a level usually reserved for rock stars, and spawned a series of massive lawsuits against powerful multinational corporations. This is the story of the whiskey fungus.

Dr. James Scott is a faculty member in the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto where is the Head of the Division of Occupational & Environmental Health, and the Director of the UAMH Centre for Global Microfungal Biodiversity. Dr. Scott’s research focuses on the interactions between people and microorganisms (fungi, bacteria and viruses). His mycological work studies the taxonomy, ecology and aerobiology of human-associated fungi responsible for infectious and allergic disease. His work on bacteria focuses on the influence of environmental exposures on the acquisition and maturation of the infant gut microbiome, and the airborne movement of pathogenic bacteria in healthcare buildings and outdoor air. Lastly, his work on viruses investigates the airborne transmission of influenza and most recently SARS-CoV-2, and he is one of a handful of North American experts on bioaerosols with specific expertise in particle filtration efficiency of masks and respirators. Dr. Scott’s teaching deals with biological hazards in the workplace and community, public health sanitation, and medical and veterinary mycology. Most recently Dr. Scott joined the executive team of PsiloTech Health Solutions, a Canadian biotech start-up led by neuropsychiatrist and psychopharmacologist Dr. Peter Silverstone to commercialize the clinical use of psychedelic mushrooms in the treatment of PTSD and other psychiatric illnesses resistant to conventional therapy.

The lecture takes place Friday, April 1, 2022 at 7:00pm

Richard W. Kerrigan – Agaricus of North America – Sunday, March 25, 2022 at 7:00pm (eastern time)

Richard W. Kerrigan

Richard W. Kerrigan

An introduction to the Agaricus genus and how it is organized taxonomically and phylogenetically, followed by a series of interesting or representative examples of species in North America. Where possible, emphasis will be placed on species in Northeastern North America.

Richard W. Kerrigan was born and raised in California. He became interested in Agaricus in 1971, after meeting David Arora while both were undergraduates at the University of California, Santa Cruz. He earned a bachelor’s and a master’s degree at San Francisco State University (1976, 1982, with mentor Harry Thiers), a doctorate from University of California, Santa Barbara (1989), and was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Toronto (1989-1991). From 1991-2017, Kerrigan held the position of Director of Research, U.S.A., with Sylvan Inc., the world’s leading producer of cultivated mushroom spawn, where he worked on breeding improved strains of cultivated mushrooms. His study of the diversity, taxonomy, systematics and phylogeny of wild species of Agaricus continues as a separate, independent area of research now extending over 50 years.

The lecture will take place Sunday, March 25, 2022 at 7:00pm (eastern time)

Susan Hopkins – Mushrooms, Unique Natural Dyers – Friday, March 18, 2022 at 7pm

Susan Hopkins

Susan Hopkins

This talk will be an introduction to mushroom dyeing. First, I will go over basic procedure including preparation and mordanting of the wool, creation of the dye bath and some variables that can affect the color like pH and the source of the water used. The second part will focus on the species of wild mushrooms that I have found to have the most interesting pigments that can be easily taken up by the wool from a hot water bath. Lastly, I will talk about the most recent International Fungi and Fibre Symposiums that I have attended where mushroom dyers and crafters get together about every 2 years to share their experiments and learn from each other.

Susan Hopkins learned to identify fungi as a member of the New Jersey Mycological Association for the last 42 years. She has attended most of the North Eastern Mycological Forays, and several North American Mycological Forays, which in August of 2019 was held at Paul Smiths College, NY. After attending the 1993 International Fungi-Fibre Symposium in Scotland she became a “dyer”, learning the use of various species of wild fungi to dye wool. She has attended 13 of the International Fungi and Fibre Symposiums over the years traveling to all the Scandinavia countries, and also Spain, Estonia and Australia. Identification is her main focus with a special interest in all of the tooth fungi including the genus Hydnellum, Phellodon, and Sarcodon. Susan now lives in the Adirondack mountains of NY learning the local fungi flora and continues to do many lectures, walks, and demonstrations on fungi and mushroom dyeing.

The lecture took place Friday, March 18, 2022, at 7pm

Machiel Noordeloos – Monitoring and studying the diversity of higher fungi in primary sand dunes along the Dutch Atlantic Coast – Sunday, March 6, 2022 at 1:00pm

Machiel Noordeloos

Machiel Noordeloos

The Dutch Atlantic coast is for the most part protected by a system of sand dunes, that varies in width from a few hundred meters to a stretch 15 to 20 km. The primary, shifting sand-dunes and the inland fixed sand-dunes form a unique ecosystem, that is protected and listed as Natura 2000 biodiversity reserves according to European Union standards. A large-scale monitoring project by members of the Dutch Mycological Society started about ten years ago. This Citizen Science Project yielded a lot of new data, and it appears that the fungal diversity in these habitats is surprisingly high. At present more than 160 species are recorded, many of them being unique for this habitat and adapted to the dynamic ecological circumstances. After a short introduction on the dune systems and their origins, and the current monitoring project, an overview will be given of the fungal groups that play a role in this ecosystem, with focus on Agarics, larger Ascomycetes, and Gasteromycetes.

About Machiel Noordeloos: PhD, honorary fellow of Naturalis Biodiversity Centre, Leiden, The Netherlands. Born 1949 in The Hague, The Netherlands. PhD in mycology on the taxonomy of Entoloma (Agaricales) in Europe in 1981 under supervision of Dr. Cornelis Bas. He worked most of his career at the Rijksherbarium, Leiden (later National Herbarium of the Netherlands, and now Naturalis Biodiversity Centre), with a 4-years break as head of the mycology department of the Plant Protection Service, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
Machiel is specialist in the taxonomy of Agaricales and Boletes, with a strong focus on Entoloma sensu lato, various white spored genera in the Tricholomataceae sensu lato, Lactarius and Boleti. He is Editor of the Flora agaricina neerlandica, a critical flora of Agarics and Boleti in the Netherlands and Western Europe, of which 7 volumes have been published to date. He has published numerous articles and a series of monographs, cooperates with many specialists all over the world. He retired in 2011 but remains very active. Currently, he is involved in a complete revision of his work on European Entoloma based on phylogenetic studies. Besides his taxonomic work, Machiel is also very active in the Netherlands Mycological Society. He is scientific supervisor of a citizen science project called Network Ecological Monitoring, an initiative of the European Union to monitor the status of biodiversity in the so-called Natura 2000 biodiversity reserves.

The lecture will take place Sunday March 6, 2022, 1:00pm

Noah Siegel – Money in the Bankeraceae; Taking a Bite Into Tooth Fungi – Friday February 25, 2022, 7:00pm

Noah Siegel

Noah Siegel

We will explore the group of tooth fungi which include Hydnellum, Sarcodon, Phellodon and Bankera, the latest changes, and tips on identification of this tricky group.

Noah Siegel’s field mycology skills are extensive – he has spent over three decades seeking, photographing, identifying, and furthering his knowledge about all aspects of macrofungi. He has hunted for mushrooms throughout the United States and Canada, as well as on multiple expeditions to New Zealand and Australia and Cameroon. He is one of the premier mushroom photographers in the nation, having won numerous awards from the North American Mycological Association (NAMA) photography contest. His technique and attention to detail are unrivaled, arising from a philosophy of maximizing utility for identification purposes while maintaining a high degree of aesthetic appeal. His photographs have appeared on the covers and have been featured in articles of multiple issues of FUNGI Magazine, the primary mushroom enthusiast magazines in the United States, numerous mushroom books, as well as many club publications. He authored, along with Christian Schwarz, Mushrooms of the Redwood Coast, a comprehensive guide for the northern California coast, and is currently working on a guide to the Pacific Northwest. Noah travels and lectures extensively across America, following the mushrooms from coast to coast, and everywhere in between.

The lecture will take place on Friday February 25, 2022 at 7:00pm

Tom Horton – A Mycocentric View of the Wood Wide Web – Friday February 18, 2022 at 7pm

Tom Horton

We’ve recently heard Suzanne Simard discuss her revolutionary finding that the trees in the forest are connected to each other by a fungal web, and that they are sharing nutrients and more via that web. But how is that web formed? What is really happening as different fungal species interact with different trees’ roots and with each other? What sorts of recognition and movement are going on underground? The mycorrhizal network is behaving in ways that are surprisingly complex, and this complexity is rarely referred to — probably because it’s microscopic, underground and difficult to decode. While Suzanne was figuring out the web by feeding labelled CO2 to trees, Tom was working on identifying the fungi at the roots of trees. The opportunity to hear both talks will give us a rare and valuable top-to-bottom view of the wood wide web.

About Tom Horton
After getting his BA at Humboldt State University, Tom went on to get an MA in Ecology & Systematics at San Francisco State U, where  he investigated the role of mycorrhizal fungi associated with chaparral plants facilitating Douglas-fir establishment. Dr. Tom Parker, a plant ecologist was his main advisor, but he was lucky to also work closely with Dr. Harry Thiers and Dr. Dennis Desjardin. Continuing to work with eminent mycologists, he got his PhD at UC Berkeley with Tom Bruns, focusing on the use of molecular tools to investigate underground ectomycorrhizal communities. He did his post-doc at Oregon State U. under Drs. Randy Molina and Jim Trappe, continuing to study mycorrhizal fungi and plant dynamics. He is now a professor at SUNY Syracuse where his projects follow his general interest in knowing how the life history of ectomycorrhizal fungi influence plant succession and plant community dynamics in general.

Ths talk happened at 7pm on Friday, February 18, 2022