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.