Mushrooms are amazing because they can be so versatile, and they’re fairly easy to grow. Mushrooms usually tend to grow in the wild, but curated kits for them by companies similar to Sporebuddies make it relatively easy for them to be cultivated at home. Many people don’t know that there are different kinds of mushrooms besides the familiar button, shiitake and portabello. What’s more, each is prized for different reasons, and some can grow large, while others are more delicate and require certain conditions. So, are mushrooms plants or something else?
The final frontier has been explored and conquered. Up until about two centuries ago, mushrooms were, for all intents and purposes, considered plants. That is until an Austrian botanist named Elias Magnus Fries redefined them as fungi in 1837. That’s not the only change Fries made, though. He also classified mushrooms as his kind of animal, thus maturing what is now known as mycology. Today we have a more nuanced and complex understanding of mushrooms than ever before. But what about the mushrooms you eat? Do they really belong to the plant kingdom?
Are mushrooms plants? You might have thought so, but the whole debate has been simmering for a while now, with some people in favour of the so-called “mushroom plants” while others are firmly against them. The argument revolves around whether the fungi that grow on wood, in the wild, or in people’s homes are actually plants. Most botanists think they’re not, but you can find plenty of others who say otherwise. It’s all very confusing, really.
Mushrooms are a common part of the human diet. These edible fungi are a culinary delight and play a role in some cultures around the world. They are a source of vitamins, minerals, and the amino acid ergothioneine. They are one of the most commonly consumed foods globally. Moreover, mushrooms containing compounds such as psilocybin, psilocin, and baeocystin can also be used as a medicinal alternative to treat chronic pain. People can buy shroom gummies, herbal tea, and chocolate online on sites such as weedsmart.
Overall, mushrooms have various benefits and can be used by people for a variety of reasons, but they are rarely considered plants. In fact, they are fungi, which can be found growing in every country on Earth. With their extensive spread across the globe, mushrooms have been used by humans for centuries for their psychoactive properties. Many scientists are trying to learn more about these medicinal properties and how they could help treat mental illnesses, but it’s important for them to work out the correct dosage, as some mushrooms have stronger effects than others. Fungi are very different from plants, so whilst we may have mastered the world of botanical medicine, we’re still working on mycological treatments.
There is still some debate over whether fungi are plants, but regardless of whether they are, mushrooms are an incredibly diverse group of organisms that can be found on every continent except Antarctica.
You probably know that mushrooms are fungi, but you might not know why fungi are so important in the lives of all plants and animals (yes, even humans). Fungi are essential for all life on Earth and have served as crucial food sources for all our species for hundreds of millions of years. They accomplish this by breaking down dead organic material in the soil, acting as decomposers, and decomposing the dead matter into nutrient-rich soil.
The mushrooms and other fungi we eat today are, in fact, not mushrooms at all. They are actually fungi, a group of organisms that mainly grow in soil or on other kinds of decaying organic matter. Some species of fungi are saprophytes, meaning they feed on dead or decaying organic matter. Some fungi are edible, but some can be harmful to humans. For example, Stachybotrys, otherwise known as toxic black mold, is commonly found in households and can have catastrophic effects on the human body. That is why homeowners regularly take help from firms similar to this reliable mold company in Ottawa to inspect their homes for harmful fungi and if present, get rid of them.
The world of fungi encompasses the largest number of species on Earth and is second only to the animal kingdom. While scientists are still trying to figure out how mushrooms reproduce (and how those who eat them can get sick), the fungus community is enormous. Some are more than 90 percent vegetable, while others are more than 90 percent fungal.
Mushrooms are perhaps one of the more interesting and misunderstood plant substances on the planet. Contrary to popular belief, these tiny fungi do not grow on trees or the ground. Instead, the vast majority of mushrooms are agaric, meaning they grow in clusters on the decaying wood of trees and other plants. These fungi are different from truffles (which grow on the roots of trees) and also differ from edible mushrooms (which grow on the ground).
Mushrooms are a great source of nutrients to include in any diet. However, they are not plants, hence whether they are classified as plants or not. Mushrooms are more closely related to fungi and are, in fact, the only fungi excluded from the group of plants. They are primarily grown commercially in the form of mushrooms.