Fungi Foraging & Folklore - with Nick Phillips of Grown Up Mushrooms

mushrooms nature ecology nature connection nature connectedness psychedelic ecology spiritual ecology
Hosted by The Psychedelic Society
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Summer is in full swing and while we revel in the magic of festivals, beer gardens and sunny afternoons in nature, we may be wishing it will never end. 

But with the return of cooler, wetter weather, another kind of magic occurs…

Mushroom Fruiting Season

The fruiting bodies of many mushroom species flourish in autumn, and this year we have a series of events to celebrate the return of our fantastic fungal friends.

Kicking us off is Nick Phillips of Grown Up Mushrooms, who will join us online ahead of some wild and wicked foraging events in the Greater London area later this year.

In this session, Nick will share his experiences with the fungal world from foraging and identification, dabbling with psychotropic species and growing enough mushrooms to feed a town, or two.

Nick's fascination for all things fungi has brought him into connection with the more mystical elements of mycology, so come prepared to hear of tales that uncover mushrooms rooted deep in our country's historical myths and folklore.

In this session you will learn..

  • What is a mushroom... and what is fungus?
  • How and why they do their thing and their role in the interconnectivity of nature
  • Notable species, with a focus on psychotropic fungi
  • Mushroom myth and folklore
  • Potential partnerships with fungi
  • Further information on upcoming foraging events

The talk will be followed by a Q&A.


Grown Up Mushrooms is the name of a small gourmet mushroom farm in West Dorset which focuses on getting delicious mushrooms to the local populace and educating people on the power of mushrooms both grown and found. 

Founder Nick has been foraging for mushrooms for most of his life in one way or another, starting out as a boy with his grandmother looking for field mushrooms, then dipping toes into the power of liberty caps as a teenager. He has been foraging with a greater appreciation for around 12 years. Nick holds his grandmother’s basket as he hunts, inspired by her passion for all things wild.

Now he has grown up and found his thing, and wants others to share in the joy that mushrooms can bring. Part of the message is to be more mature about the mushrooms we eat - no longer should anything other than a button be considered weird or deadly. The world of fungi is rife beneath our feet and is the great recycler and terraformer of our planet. It’s about time we got wise to its power. Nick has conducted a series of courses and workshops in and around the West Dorset area, facilitating foraging classes in the woods and wilds of West Dorset, focusing on identification techniques of edibles (like the crunchy chanterelle) and deadibles (a few destroying angels have graced us with their presence) with a brief dip into the powers of medicinal mushrooms, including the powerful healing properties of the abundant Turkey Tail.

GUM predominantly grows Lion’s Mane, Shiitakes, Oyster Mushrooms and Wine Caps out of shipping containers (called the Fungarium) in a farm yard near Bridport in West Dorset, selling to restaurants, farm shops and health food shops, with the occasional market appearance.

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