Mushrooms of Sonoma County

Saturday, January 29, 2022 

10:00am – 1:30pm
$35 per person, $30 for Friends of Pepperwood
Ages 13 and up
Meet at the Dwight Center

The rainy season is a great time to get acquainted with fascinating fungi that are typically unseen the rest of the year. With the winter moisture of Sonoma County, vital networks of fungal mycelium hiding under our feet and in fallen logs put forth their fruiting bodies – showing us their many mushroom forms from the more recognizable toadstools and shelf fungi to the stranger bird’s nest or jelly fungi. Join Melina Kozanitas, biologist and mycology lecturer at Sonoma State University, to learn how to find, identify, and understand local mushrooms.

During this expedition in the field, Melina will guide you through environments in which fungi may thrive, such as mixed-hardwood forest and grassland. As you encounter mushroom specimens along the way, you will learn about the structures and defining features of various fungi species and practice identifying them. We will conclude the day with a microscope lab, providing the opportunity to observe microscopic details for a deeper understanding of the fungi we find. 

This event includes a slow-paced hike, up to 2 miles on varied terrain. It will go on in light rain, though heavy storms will cancel. All events will follow current regional health safety guidelines. Since this class will include some time indoors, we request that all participants be prepared to show proof of covid vaccination. In case of cancellation due to weather or health safety measures, refunds will be offered. 

Melina Kozanitas has extensive experience studying ecology at Pepperwood as a visiting researcher through the Ackerly Lab at UC Berkeley – where she earned her PhD in Plant Pathology. Melina currently serves as a post doctoral researcher at UC Berkeley, and is a guest lecturer at Sonoma State University, teaching Intro to Biology, Plant Biology, and of course, Mycology!

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Register for this class using the secure form below.

Early bird registration for Friends of Pepperwood begins at 9am on Monday, December 6, 2021. Enter the code you received as a current Friend of Pepperwood to access early registration and to receive your discount. If you’re not sure about your Friends of Pepperwood status or don’t know the code, contact Sloane Shinn, Community Engagement, at or (707) 591-9310 x 133. Click here to become a Friend of Pepperwood today!

Registration for the general public begins at 9am on Monday, December 13, 2021.

For all questions about this event, please contact Holland Gistelli, Education Program Coordinator, at or (707) 591-9310 x 124.