Amanita phalloides look alikes in S.E. Asia?

BrianMc brianmc at
Sun Feb 11 17:20:43 EST 1996

Nathan's managed to make most of my points for me, so I'll just attempt to
add what I know.

Vollvariella volvacea is the mushroom of commerce in SE Asia, much as
Agaricus bisporus is in this country.  It is widely cultivated, and NOT
collected in the wild.  At least one newspaper report correctly attributed
the confusion to Amanita hemibapha.  That report will appear in my
newsletter, MycoInfo, this coming Wednesday (publishing schedule is slower
than the 'net, sorry).

Volvariella grows extremely fast under tropical conditions, but requires
temperatures and humidities that are difficult to maintain in a temperate
climate (voice of experience after two failed attempts at fruitbodiy
production).  Volvariella speciosa  **does** occur in Sonomoa California
(where these events took place), and **could** potentially have been
confused with Amanita phalloides, but there are other circumstantial
indications that the victims thought they were picking A. hemibapha (i.e.
the method in which the mushrooms were prepared).
| Brian McNett                   e-mail: <brianmc at>
| Editor: MycoInfo      <bmcnett at>
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