Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Beautiful and deadly!
Amanita Muscaria

Beauty can be deceiving, even worse it can be deadly!.
I was so happy to see these beautiful mushrooms popping out in cluster all over my backyard. I took some pictures and I even put on my desktop. They were so perfect, they come up as a white stright stem, then the top forms a rounded white ball, then it turns bright shiny orange with white evenly spaced raised spots. The ball flattens and there you have it, a perfect umbrella.
Once the romantic fascination settled, it is time to look up the facts. The beauty was just skin deep. I turned to my friend google which gave me 1,340,000 web sites in .22 sec! This beautiful on the outside turned out to be quite ugly, so much so that even bugs and worms avoid it. I guess you got to be horribly ugly for bugs and worms to avoid you. It turned out that those worms and bugs have something to teach us ! But now I know the beauty (on the long run) is always within.

Needless to say I went on destructive spree, which I am sure that I will do again once the snow melts but not before taking more pictures of this poisonous beauty. You know they are still beautiful! And beauty remains attractive. The official name of this mushroom was Amantia Muscaria and the non official one was DEATH ANGEL!

My regards,
Abu Hesham Posted by Picasa


At 4:15 AM, Blogger SillyBahrainiGirl said...

When was this picture taken?
If it is a recent picture, how come you don't have snow and we do???

At 8:52 AM, Blogger Haitham Salman said...

it was taken Aug 30th 2005. The summer is really nice and very green. We have plenty of snow now

At 2:18 AM, Blogger Cerebralwaste said...

Damn!!! That thing sure looks like it would cook up nice a bit of butter, a splash of wine and just a hint of garlic salt! A rule of thumb I have heard about mushrooms is:

"if it grows on wood it will cook up good, if it grows on the ground death abounds."

I must note I don't know how accurate that adage is, but more than one person has told me this.

At 12:14 PM, Blogger i said...

Amanita Muscaria and Death Angel are not the same mushroom. Also, Amanita Muscaria is not poisonous. It has been considered sacred in almost all ancient civilisations, so inform zourself better before another destruction spree. ;D

At 2:41 AM, Blogger Somebody said...

I've been obsessively reading most of those 1,340,000 webpages since september 2005, and I am still amazed at the amout of interesting stuff I find out even now, in connection to this plant, which seem to have been THE sacramental food of almost every religion on the planet. At least in their beginings.

True, it is "poisonous" in raw form, but not deadly poisonous, just make-you-sweat-and-vomit poisonous. It also can be tamed with proper preparation.

For it's other properties... well, let's just say that they say it is worth the sweat, and that I envy you for your backyard - I will have to go to the local sacred mountain to hunt them this summer...

For an introduction, go to

For the rest, look at some of those other webpages, or better, google "amanita muscaria" "sacred food".

Enjoy your meal. And don't forget to send me some in the august :)

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