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Boletus barrowsii


Common name:White King Bolete
Spore Print: Dark olive-brown
Habitat: Grows associated with the roots of certain trees. Only found at higher elevations in the rocky mountains.
Edibility: One of the best edible mushrooms in Colorado!
Comments: This large mushroom is very similar to Boletus edulis but is different in that it has a white cap and it's flesh is a little denser (more weight per volume of mushroom). It is found only in the mountains of Colorado and New Mexico. This mushroom was often classified as a 'White Boletus edulis' but has since been awarded it's own species name. It is named after Chuck Barrows, an amateur mycologist who 'discovered' the species. Apparently, Chuck Barrows had been studying the mushrooms of New Mexico for many years. Year after year, he had noticed the very different coloration and somewhat different habitat of certain groups of mushrooms from the classic Boletus edulis (also found in New Mexico) and surmised that what he had was probably a new species. He sent dried specimens with very careful and accurate descriptions of the fresh mushrooms to Alexander H. Smith and Harry Thiers (then a graduate student of Smith) at the University of Michigan. Smith and Thiers agreed that it was a new and distinctive species, and decided to name the fungus Boletus barrowsii, after Chuck Barrows. Chuck repeated this scenario many more times over the course of 35 years, seven of those times resulting in a new species description. Besides Boletus barrowsii, these include Lactarius barrowsii, Amanita barrowsii, and Hebeloma barrowsii. Chuck, unfortunately, is no longer with us, having passed away at the age of 85 in 1989.

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Mushroom Identification