Ghost Mushroom Lane

Take a trip down Ghost Mushroom Lane

A luminous mushroom can be found growing in South East pine forest during May and June each year and ForestrySA is pleased to offer you the chance to experience the brilliant glow first hand – free of charge!

The aptly named “Ghost Mushroom”, Omphalotus nidiformis, emits a soft green glow after dark as a result of a chemical reaction between fungal enzymes and oxygen. This glow can be bright enough to read words on a page!

The mushroom typically emerges after late autumn rains and continues into winter, growing up to 20cm wide.

More than 18,500 visited the forest to see the Ghost Mushroom in the 2017 opening season, creating significant media attention. See video below:

Ghost Mushroom Lane will open again in 2018 – so stay tuned!

What is the Ghost Mushroom?

The Ghost Mushroom (Omphalotus nidiformis) is a bioluminescent fungus that emits a soft green glow at night. The glow can be bright enough to read a book!

Ghost Mushrooms are native to Australia and can often be found growing on decaying plant material, such as stumps left after pine tree harvest. They emerge in late autumn following good rain and continue into winter, reaching a size of up to 20cm wide.

The glow of the fungi is a result of a chemical reaction between fungal enzymes and oxygen. It is thought that the glow attracts insects and other invertebrates which feed or forage on the mushroom and help spread spores.

Visit Ghost Mushroom Lane

ForestrySA is invites members of the public to drive down Ghost Mushroom Lane after dark during May and June and experience the glow of the mushroom for themselves.

The lane is located within a known mushroom breeding ground, among pine forest near Glencoe just 16km from Mount Gambier.

For those keen to exit their car, take a walk and view the mushrooms up close, warm clothes, sensible shoes and a torch are recommended. Ghost markers are also available at the beginning of the lane and can be placed along the track where mushroom populations have been found to assist other visitors.

For the enjoyment of others, please leave the mushrooms exactly as you found them. The chemical in the mushroom responsible for the glow can be poisonous, causing cramps and vomiting if ingested. Accidental touching is not harmful.

A forest permit is not required to visit the trail, but please observe the conditions of entry to the forest and take care while walking on uneven ground in the dark.

Click here for more local forest access information.

How to get there

Ghost Mushroom Lane is a 2.3km drive located within pine forest near Glencoe, just 16km North West of Mount Gambier.

From the Riddoch Highway / Princes Highway Roundabout (near Lady Nelson Visitor Centre, Mount Gambier), drive along the Princes Highway towards Millicent.

After 12km, turn right on Kangaroo Flat Road and drive for a further 4.3 km, before turning right into Ghost Mushroom Lane.
Signage will be clearly visible from the road.

Bring your camera and share the love on social

As always, we encourage forest visitors to bring their cameras along to record and share their forest experience.

While producing clear shots in the dead of night can be tricky, thanks to well known local photographer and nature enthusiast Ockert le Roux, it has never been more simple.

Ockert has kindly put together a technical guide to would-be photographers capture the best possible shots of the ghost mushroom. Just scroll down to the bottom of this page to have a read.

We would love to see how much you enjoyed Ghost Mushroom Lane. Be sure to share your experience on social media and let others know about this unique opportunity.

Be sure to add the hashtags below to help others find your images:
#GhostMushroom #GhostMushroomLane #OmphalotusNidiformis #MountGambier #LimestoneCoast #ForestrySA #Fungi #Forest #GreenTriangle #DiscoverMountGambier

Photographing the Ghost Mushroom

A guide by photographer Ockert le Roux

Photographing the Ghost Mushroom in the cold, dark forest environment is no easy feat.

Capture the best shots possible, with this purpose-written guide courtesy of local photographer and nature enthusiast Ockert le Roux.

Read the guide here.

Thank you to our supporters

This unique community project would not have been possible without the contributions of a number of local groups and individuals.

Special thanks go to OneFortyOne Plantations, the South Australian Tourism Commission, The Lady Nelson Visitor and Discovery Centre and Tourism Mount Gambier and local photographer Ockert le Roux for supporting this very popular community initiative.

We want to hear from you

We hope you enjoy your visit to the forest and would love to receive your feedback.

Send us an email and let us know what you think.

Get in touch with ForestrySA

Have a question or need some more information about ForestrySA?
Visit our contact page for more information.

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