Tree Volvariella
Volvariella bombycina
Agaricus bombycinus
Volvaria bombycina

On November 25 I walked the woods of Jordan Pond Park, which is in my back yard.  On an oak that was leaning out over the water I saw a mushroom that did not look like a polypore.  It was growing on the underside and too far away to get a clear look.  I took a picture:

I noticed the curving stem in the picture.  The next day I went back and cut off the mushroom with a telescoping painting pole on which I installed a putty knife.  I managed to guide the cap to shore before it had a chance to float away.  Taking into account the freezing weather we have had, it looks like it might be a Tree Volvariella:

It looks a bit freeze dried.  The cap was 5.5" in diameter.

The stem where I cut it is pure white.  I will have to wait till the pond freezes over before I will be able to see if the remains of the stem has a thick volva.  I am in the process of taking a spore print but from the color of the gills shown in the pictures that should come out right for Tree Volvariella.

So as of now, it looks like one of my 2005 goals will be achieved in 2004 :o)