Edible Mushrooms, Pacific Northwest
There are two North American Albatrellus species that are blue, the eastern Albatrellus Caeruleoporus Mushroom and the western Albatrellus Flettii Mushroom. There are 12 Albatrellus species in North America. This mushroom’s beautiful blue color is only around for a short while and after the first few days, it quite often turns into a rather plain looking mushroom.
These mushrooms are often found in low, wet woods, growing alone or in small groups during the summer and fall. Albatrellus Flettii, common in western North America, is found on the eastern side of Vancouver Island and is quite common in the Nimpkish River area, it can be found in various other coastal areas, but never in great abundance. The Albatrellus Caeruleoporus is found in eastern North America.
The cap is up to 7 cm across and more or less circular in outline, grayish blue but becoming brown, brownish, or an orangey brown, as it grows, it commonly splits. The stem is up to 8 cm long, up to 2 cm wide and blue, changing to a gray or brownish color with age. The flesh is whitish and soft when fresh. The odor is not distinctive and the taste is fairly mild but slightly acrid. The spore print is white. When dried, the mushrooms will change to a reddish orange color.
These mushrooms are edible but not very choice, sort of like eating cloth after they are cooked. I would look for more pleasant mushrooms and enjoy these for their beauty. Still, its quite exciting to see them, and to see them during their blue stage is awesome. We usually see them along the trails in the fall, they stand out quite brightly when blue.