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Poisonous Plants in GB

46 47 Frosted Fibre cAp the sickener Inocybe maculata Russula emetica Frosted Fibre Cap. Family Cortinariaceae. Found under beech trees on chalky soils. This chestnut brown mushroom with a slightly frosted appearance has a fibrous cap 2 to 8cm in diameter, with a central point or umbo. The gills are greybuff to cinnamon, and the ringless stem does not possess a volva or death cup at the base. Many other inocybes possess a similar shape with midbrown gills. Inocybes, such as this one and the related Inocybe geophylla with a white cap contain the alkaloid muscarine and can be deadly. Muscarine is also found in some clitocybe, mycena and amanita species. When dried, this mushroom smells of musky perfume but do not be tempted to inhale as this can cause poisoning Muscarine causes a slowed pulse, sweating, reduced pupil size, muscular twitching, discoordination and stomach cramps. It does not affect the brain directly, but causes confusional states due to its profound disturbance of the autonomic nervous system. The antidote is atropine derived from deadly nightshade, which reverses the neurotransmitter effects of muscarine. The Sickener. Family Russulaceae. Synonym Spit Devil. Found in association with conifer trees. The similar beech wood sickener Russula mairei is found under beech. A small white stemmed mushroom with white gills, no ring or volva on the stem and a scarlet cap 3 to 10 cm across. This is one of a small number of the russula group that are actually poisonous. When eaten this mushroom causes gastric upset and vomiting although in healthy individuals the symptoms usually pass fairly quickly. The dried mushroom powder has allegedly been used as a seasoning in parts of Eastern Europe.
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