Author: John Carter

Psilocybe Semilanceata: Liberty Cap Mushroom Identification and Information

how to identify liberty caps

Mushrooms themselves, including liberty caps, are the fruiting body, or reproductive organ, of a fungal organism that is mostly underground. Mushrooms grow from mycelium, which is a network-like fungal mass that lives in soil. And Missouri and Oklahoma are greenlighting bills promoting further research on psychedelic mushrooms. Look for liberty cap mushrooms in pastures or other grassy areas. In North America, you can find these mushrooms west of the Cascade mountain range from Northern California and into the Pacific Northwest, including British Columbia.

how to identify liberty caps

You can see a thin gelatinous film if you peel back or break the mushroom cap. If exposed to the sun, the gelatinous film dries up, turns whitish, loses its malleability, and cannot be peeled backward. The possession or sale of psilocybin mushrooms is illegal in many countries. Remember, you can’t identify liberty caps on any one feature. If it’s smaller or bigger than this, it’s probably not a liberty cap.

They mainly grow in wetlands across warmer parts of the world. On average, Psilocybe azurenscens (considered the most potent psilocybin mushroom) contains more psilocybin (1.78 percent). Smaller specimens of liberty caps usually have the highest concentrations of psilocybin. And with more funding allocated for psilocybin research, we can expect to see exciting new discoveries soon. Most of the time, liberty cap mushrooms are easy to identify with their bell-shaped pileus or conical cap. The genus ‌Conocybe also has a similar cap and contains toxic compounds.

It is named for the ancient region of Phrygia, located in modern-day Turkey (2). These effects are because psilocin or psilocybin acts on serotonin receptors in your brain. This happens because of the way in which the fungus reacts to injury. When a mushroom is injured, it releases enzymes that cause the cap and stem to turn blue and bruise purple. This enzyme is found in all species of fungi but is not harmful to humans in small doses.

How to Eat Liberty Cap or Magic Mushrooms

The mushroom, Psilocybe Fimetaria, has a blue base, unlike the Psilocybe semilanceata. But after their breakfast, the family started to show some worrying symptoms. It seemed that “J.S” had developed vertigo, a loss of balance, and black spots across his vision. After sleeping in the same bed as their relative, the rest of the family complained of stomach cramps, poisoning, and feelings of numbness in their hands and feet. But a few hundred yards in, he started to disorientate and remember how he had forgotten what he was doing or where he was going.

The dainty, ribbed and pointed cap on slender stems belie a potentially poisonous little edible growing in grasslands around the world. The Liberty Cap mushroom, also known as a magic mushroom for its psychedelic effects, has long been used as a hallucinogenic in many cultures around the world for thousands of years. While some say it is safer to ingest than processed drugs for a fast feeling of euphoria that can last for hours, the Liberty Cap mushroom can also be dangerous to ingest. Liberty caps are considered to be one of the “friendlier” magic mushrooms and are considered ideal for beginners. Users have reported feeling happy, empathetic, and social after they consume liberty caps.

Where does Psilocybe Semilanceata grow?

If exposed to the sun, gelatin can dry out and become brittle. The tiny-capped mushrooms prefer wet areas that are undisturbed by foot traffic or grazing by farm animals. They can be found growing in thick numbers in grassland habitats. However, they are indigenous to Europe with distribution in Germany, Greece, Hungary, Estonia, Finland, France, Spain, Slovakia, Switzerland, Turkey, and the United Kingdom. In the US, the liberty caps can be found in the Pacific Northwest and on the Cascade mountains’ western side. In Canada, they are located in Nova Scotia, Ontario, Quebec, British Columbia, and New Brunswick.

Over the years, awareness of liberty caps has increased with more people interested in Roman antiquity. Dutch coins dating back to 1577 feature the Dutch national emblem, a liberty cap. Whilst William of Orange has been seen as the champion of English liberties and Protestantism, not everything he did or said is admirable. Their restricted habitat makes them a challenging target for mushroom hunters. Many people have never seen a liberty cap before unless they find one by chance during a walk in the woods.

You can also find these shrooms in grassland habitats throughout Europe, including Ireland, France, Holland, Norway, and Switzerland (1). The most common side effect is nausea, which can be avoided by eating them in moderation and taking food with them. If you have never taken psilocybin before, start with only a small amount until you know how your body will react to it. Some people experience headaches or dizziness after psilocybin mushroom ingestion.

  1. There are many different types of magic mushrooms aside from the Liberty Cap.
  2. They can be easily located in warmer climates between September and December.
  3. The mushrooms have a distinctive conical to bell-shaped cap, up to 2.5 cm (1 in) in diameter, with a small nipple-like protrusion on the top.
  4. Brande wrote a full description of the incident for the Medical and Physical Journal.
  5. You may even want to check the same locations more than once as mushrooms can spring up overnight.
  6. The species is much less common in South America, with the mushroom being found in Chile.

However, in later mycological handbooks, Psilocybe semilanceata was identified as the liberty cap. They would experience intense symptoms, return to normal, and then develop their symptoms again. The family was convinced they were dying, except for the eight-year-old son, Edward, who had taken the largest dose of mushrooms. Some can be slightly wider than they are tall, but will still have some height to them.

Liberty Cap Mushroom Facts

You shouldn’t have to go far to find some liberty caps in the UK. Local parks, common recreational areas, race tracks, woodland and country paths are all potential growing spots. The gills of mature liberty caps are dark due to the purple-black spores they are producing.

History of Magic Mushrooms

Mycologist Elias Magnus Fries was the first to name this mushroom species. However, the mushrooms were later renamed several times by other mycologists until they became known as Psilocybe Semilanceata, as named by Jacob Emanuel Lange in 1936. Also, in many areas, mushrooms containing psilocybin remain illegal, and penalties for possession are severe.

As mentioned earlier, liberty cap mushrooms have bell-like, conical-shaped caps. The shape of the caps remains the same throughout the lifetime of the mushroom. The cap margin (edge) is rolled in for the younger liberty caps but unrolls to become straight as the mushroom ages. In some cases, the margins even roll upwards as the mushrooms mature. Put simply, it is a species of psilocybin mushroom, known as Psilocybe semilanceata.