Yellow Houseplant Mushrooms ( Leucocoprinus birnbaumii )

Yellow Houseplant Mushrooms (Leucocoprinus birnbaumii)

Nudgers and shovers
In spite of ourselves.
Our kind multiplies:

We shall by morning
Inherit the earth.
Our foot’s in the door.
— Syliva Plath, American poet (1932-1963)

It is excruciatingly hot outside - ninety-three degrees, to be precise. Fortunately, I need only visit our second floor to find some extraordinary fungi. Yellow Houseplant Mushrooms are growing in my potted indoor Christmas cactus!

When I first discovered the mushrooms they were desiccated. I could see tiny 'fruits' at the base of the dried up mushrooms so I have been making a point to observe them each day. Yesterday the fruits were about an inch and a half, two-and-a-half to three inches!

I learned the yellow mushrooms are the result of contaminated potting soil - contaminated with mushroom spores, that is - and they are entirely harmless to the plant. I absolutely love them.

Another endearing quality? They match the room...which is strewn with golden yellow National Geographic books and journals, a vintage Kodak film canister and of course, a whole lotta Nikon.


Jessica Allen explores the fields and forests of Pennsylvania with her artist-husband, Michael Allen, and their son, Benjamin. She shares her observations through words and pictures of everyday magic and beauty she sees in her world.