Beechwood sickener (Russula Nobilis) – Identification

Beechwood Sickener / Summer / Autumn / Inedible

Embark on a captivating exploration of the intriguing yet inedible Beechwood Sickener, scientifically known as Russula Nobilis.

In this blog post, we dive into the enigmatic world of this vibrant mushroom, renowned for its striking appearance and cautionary nature. While the Beechwood Sickener may entice with its alluring hues, its inedibility serves as a reminder of nature’s complex tapestry. Join us as we unravel the mysteries surrounding Russula Nobilis, from its fascinating ecological role to the vital lessons it imparts to foragers. Discover the hidden depths of this captivating fungus, appreciating its beauty while exercising caution in the wild. Let’s embrace the paradoxical nature of the Beechwood Sickener and gain a deeper understanding of the intricate balance that exists within the natural world.

Scientific Name

Russula Nobilis




Beech woodland


A distinctive red capped Brittlegill mushroom growing in beech woodlands, as the name suggests its not edible and causes stomach upsets and vomiting.

JovanaKoturov, CC BY-SA 4.0 <>, via Wikimedia Commons

Identifying Features for The Beechwood Sickener:


Convex to flattening sometimes slightly depressed in the middle. Bright crimson red, pale red to occasionally white. If peeled the flesh underneath is usually pink.

This image was created by user cmy610 at Mushroom Observer, a source for mycological images.You can contact this user here.English | español | français | italiano | македонски | മലയാളം | português | +/−, CC BY-SA 3.0 <>, via Wikimedia Commons


White and snaps like chalk sometimes bulbous on the base.


Adnexed white/cream, brittle and slightly connected to stem.

Adnexed gills

James Lindsey at Ecology of Commanster, CC BY-SA 2.5 <>, via Wikimedia Commons


Mushroomy however this has a very hot acrid taste to it. indicating this is a poisonous mushroom




This is a poisonous mushroom and should not be used.

In food

This is a poisonous mushroom and should not be used.


Found July through to November. However this is a poisonous mushroom and should not be used.

Known hazards

This is a poisonous mushroom and should not be used.

Potential lookalikes

the Beechwood Sickener looks incredibly similar to the Sickener however the Sickener grows mainly in Pine woods rather than beech.

-Snap – Does the stem snap like a piece of chalk?
-Flick – Do the gills break when you flick them gently?
-Peel – Does the skin on the cap peel away?
-Taste–  this should only be done when you have gone through the other steps and are confident that you have a Russula. If a tiny amount placed on the tongue a chilli like burn or tingle means the mushroom is poisonous but a pleasant mushroomy taste means it is edible.

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