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Mushrooms popping up in the yard

After several weeks of nearly non-stop rain showers, the soil is very damp and mushrooms are appearing in our yard, some even in flower pots.

They are fascinating, beautiful, and probably very toxic.

Since I am not a mycologist or fungal biologist, I know enough to just leave the mushrooms alone.

Whether edible or not, mushrooms, or fungi, form very important relationships with other plants in their ecosystem.

Some fungi link up with other plant roots to form nodes, through which they provide water and nutrients to the plants.

In return, the plants provide sugar to feed the fungi.

I'm trying to identify the different fungi sprouting in the yard, but so far have only been successful with the identification of the one in the photo above.

This is a Bolbitius titubans, also known as Bolbitius vitellinus, a widespread species of inedible mushroom found in Europe and America. It grows on rich soil, dung and sometimes on grass.

Since I left dead leaf matter in this area of the backyard, the soil is being enriched, providing optimal nutrients for the Bolbitius.

I am borrowing from our local library a book about fungi in Northern California, and hopefully will then be able to identify the other fungi.

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