Date: July 9, 2017
Leader: Gary Kauffman
On July 9, 2017 twenty-two members of the Asheville Mushroom Club participated in the Pink Beds Foray in Pisgah National Forest. The Pink Beds are a higher elevation - around 3200 feet elevation above sea level -flat terrace in the upper headwaters of the South Fork of Mills River (figure 1). The site is about 20 miles southwest of Asheville. Plant communities encountered within the Pink Beds Foray area include acidic cove forest, swamp forest-bog complex, and dry-mesic oak forest.
The weather was pleasant in the mid to upper 70’s during the foray, providing ideal conditions. As in 2016, the foray separated into three separate groups (figure 2). Two groups diverged either north or south along the the Pink Beds Loop Trail. The third group headed south from Yellow Gap Road on the Barnett Branch Trail. In 2016 only the southern portion of Barnett Branch Trail was surveyed while a portion north of Yellow Gap Road was also surveyed. Approximately 2 to 2 and ½ hours were spent by the participants along the individual trail areas.
Figure 2. 2017 mushroom foray routes
Following summer showers during June and July across the Pink Beds a good variety of mushrooms were encountered. A total of 114 species were recorded. Twelve separate milk cap, Lactarius, species and nine Amanita species were collected in 2017. Other common genera included Russula, Cortinarius, Suillus, and Cantharelleus, the chanterelles.
The 2017 foray is the ninth recorded foray within the Pink Beds. A total of 303 fungi or fungi allied species have been identified during the nine forays. In 2017, fifteen species were located for the first time during the nine forays. One species, Agaricus vinosobrunneofimidus. was recorded for the first time at a Asheville Mushroom Foray.