Striped starfish (Geastrum striatum)
- Department: Basidiomycota (Basidiomycetes)
- Subdivision: Agaricomycotina (Agaricomycetes)
- Class: Agaricomycetes (Agaricomycetes)
- Subclass: Phallomycetidae (Veselkovye)
- Order: Geastrales
- Family: Geastraceae (Geastric or Starfish)
- Genus: Geastrum (Geastrum or Zvezdovik)
- Species: Geastrum striatum
Starfish striped (Latin Geastrum striatum) belongs to the Starfish family. It got its name from its strong similarity in appearance to a large star. It has such a peculiar shape that it is almost impossible to confuse it with other types of mushrooms. This species belongs to fungi – saprotrophs, which settle on desert soil or on decomposed stumps and tree trunks. Occurs in summer and autumn in mixed forests, parks and gardens. Prefers to settle under oak and ash trees. Among mushroom pickers, this mushroom is considered inedible.
At an early age, the fruit body of the striped star is located underground in the form of a bulbous shape. As the fungus grows, the outer shell of the mushroom cracks with the appearance of creamy, pointed blades on the surface. The dense neck of the mushroom in a white powdery coating holds on itself a ball of fruit with spores. The ball contains a stomata-shaped hole for the release of spores. The globular spores are deep brown in color. Due to their leathery structure, spores can be stored in their place of growth for a rather long time. The fungus has a granular head and a tapered striped tip. The mycelium in this species is located on the surface of the earth, and not traditionally under it. The mushroom body does not have a pronounced taste and smell.
Striped starfish is one of the ten most unusual mushrooms in the world.
It is well known to professional mushroom pickers, but they rarely get it due to its low prevalence. The mushroom has no nutritional value, since it is inedible, but it is of increased interest for world scientists studying the modern diversity of wild mushrooms.
Photo of the mushroom Zvezdovik striped from the questions in recognition: