Spore Print: Brown
Habitat: Found in the woods under conifers and in horse manure.
Edibility: Edible (for most people).
Comments: Of all of the confusing Agaricus out there, I think this one is the most easily identified by it's unique cogwheel veil, larger size, sweet odor, and yellow staining cap. Don't be fooled by just the cogwheel alone though because I've found Agaricus that have a cogwheel veil, stain brown and smell terrible. This mushroom tastes a lot sweeter than your average Agaricus and doesn't have quite the same 'mushroom' flavor. The cap stains yellow but the base of the stem doesn't stain bright yellow as seen in A. xanthodermis. There are a couple other Agaricus that have a cogwheel veil that could be easily confused with this species: A. arvensis (The Horse Mushroom), which has a smaller stature and A. osecanus (The Giant Horse Mushroom), which grows much larger. Both of these are reported to be edible and choice. The first time I ate A. sylvicola I had a strange 'reaction'. I had two large fresh caps for breakfast fried up with scrambled eggs and it at first I thought it tasted good and sweet. However, an hour or so later I had a strange 'taste' in the back of my throat, kind of like a cool sensation every time I breathed in (similar to Vicks or a cough drop), along with a persistant taste of the mushroom. This sensation lasted all day and into the night. Also, I seemed to perspire the 'scent' of the sweet mushroom. I didn't like this experience at all so I threw out the rest of my A. sylvicola. I didn't get nauseous or have any stomach upset at all (which is typical of an adverse reaction for Agaricus), just a very bizzare reaction. I've heard that some people can have reactions to certain Agaricus species but I never thought that it would be me!