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Gymnopilus junonius

Gymnopilus junonius

Gymnopilus junonius
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Fungi
Division: Basidiomycota
Class: Homobasidiomycetes
Order: Agaricales
Family: Cortinariaceae
Genus: Gymnopilus
Binomial name
Gymnopilus junonius
(Fries) P.D. Orton

Agaricus spectabilis
Gymnopilus spectabilis

Gymnopilus junonius
mycological characteristics:
gills on hymenium

cap is convex


hymenium is adnate


stipe has a ring


ecology is saprotrophic


edibility: psychoactive or inedible

Gymnopilus junonius, also known as Gymnopilus spectabilis, Laughing gym or Laughing Jim, is a large and very widely distributed hallucinogenic mushroom which grows in dense clusters on dead hardwoods and conifers. It has a rusty orange spore print, a bitter taste, stains red with KOH and turns green when cooked in a pan.

Gymnopilus junonius includes subspecies which contain the hallucinogen psilocybin. Specimens found in the eastern US or Japan is more likely to contain psilocybin than similar mushrooms found in the western part of the US or Europe. [1] In Japan this mushroom is called waraitake, which translates to "laughing mushroom". This mushroom is often mistaken for Gymnopilus ventricosus, which contains no psilocybin.

This mushroom contains bis-noryangonin and hispidine, which are structurally related to alpha-pyrones found in kava. [1]


The cap ranges from 7 to 42 cm across, is convex, and is bright orange, orangish brown, or reddish brown with a dry scaly surface. The flesh is yellow and the gills are adnate to subdecurrent. The stem is 25-265 mm long, .8 to 9 mm thick, dusted with rusty orange spores and often narrowing near the base.


This mushroom grows just about everywhere that decaying wood can be found. It has been reported from Australia, Azores, Brazil, Canada (Alberta, Nova Scotia, Ontario), China, Fiji, Germany, India, Israel, Japan, Korea, Maderia, New Zealand, North Africa, Peru, Russia, Spain, Switzerland, United States (Arizona, Alabama, California, Idaho, New Jersey, Vermont), and Uruguay. [2]


  1. ^ G. M. Hatfield, L. R. Brady (1969). Occurrence of bis-noryangonin in Gymnopilus spectabilis. Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences 58 (10): 1298 - 1299.
  2. ^ Gastón Guzmán, John W. Allen & Jochen Gartz, A Worldwide Geographical Distribution of the Neurotropic Fungi, An Analysis and Discussion, Ann. Mus. civ. Rovereto Sez.: Arch., St., Sc. nat. Vol. 14 (1998) 189-280 2000
  • C.J. Alexopolous, Charles W. Mims, M. Blackwell et al., Introductory Mycology, 4th ed. (John Wiley and Sons, Hoboken NJ, 2004) ISBN 0-471-52229-5

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Gymnopilus_junonius". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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