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Wood Blewit

Edible Edible
Autumn Autumn
Winter Winter

A lovely gourmet mushroom that can be found from November to February when there is not that many other mushrooms about.

Mushroom Type
Common Names Wood Blewit (EN), Pied Bleu (FR), Coes Las y Coed (CY), Gąsówka Fioletowawa (PL), Lila Pereszke (HU)
Scientific Name Lepista nuda
Synonyms Clitocybe nuda
Season Start Oct
Season End Feb
Average Mushroom height (CM) 10
Average Cap width (CM) 12
Please note that each and every mushroom you come across may vary in appearance to these photos.


Convex becoming flattened with a wide umbo, the edges often turning up when very mature. Starting lilac/blue becoming more brown then fading. Younger mushrooms have an inturned edge.


Gills Lilac, purple or blueish but can be paler especially when very mature. Crowded.


Bluey-purple and a bit fibrous, more often than not thick and stout although can be fairly thin, and can be slightly bulbous towards the base.


Purple, lilac or blue sometimes white towards the middle fading with age.


Saprobic on leaf litter in woodland, grassland, hedgerows and gardens.

Possible Confusion

Some of the Cortinarius species, especially the Bruising Webcap (Thaxterogaster purpurascens), pictured, as they can have similar lilac blue colouring but generally have an unpleasant smell and the spore print is rusty brown. The stem will usually have band of orange/brown due to the spores sticking to the residue of the cortina or there will be some of the cortina left hanging from the edge of the cap looking a little like cobweb.
Sordid Blewit (Lepista sordida) looks almost identical to a Wood Blewit but is smaller and generally thinner fleshed. This is not a problem as both mushrooms taste the same and both are edible.

Spore Print

Off-white to pale pink. Ellipsoid. The spores should be scrapped into a small pile to get an accurate spore colour.

Taste / Smell

Mushroomy and strong, slightly perfumey with a solid, meaty texture when fairly dry but they can hold a lot of water. Can be used for most dishes and drys very well. Must be cooked before consumption.


Very Common.

Other Facts

Must be cooked before consumption.
The Blewits like the cold and only start to appear when the temperature is constantly below 17 degrees and quite easily survive a frost.


21 comments for Wood Blewit

  1. Gemma says:

    The wood blewits made a sudden appearance in our garden after a small fir tree had burn’t down
    near an Oak tree. Others I have found have also been near oak. Our garden harvest has never reappeared in over 17 years .

  2. Ruby Gray says:

    I found one of these lovelies yesterday for the first time here in Tasmania, where we have had a very wet autumn so far, growing in the leaf litter beneath my hawthorn tree.
    It is an introduced species in Australia, so a mystery to me how it could have spontaneously appeared with me never having seen it before in my 25 years here, nor indeed have I seen it anywhere else, except perhaps on River Cottage mushroom foraging expeditions!

  3. Buo says:

    Probably my favourite mushroom to eat. Easily recognizable, common, pretty, firm flesh with a strong and distinct taste. It keeps its size and doesn’t turn all mushy when cooked and its lovely scent when picked up translates perfectly into a lovely taste for your palate to enjoy.

  4. Steve says:

    I’m one of those unfortunate people who’re allergic to these mushrooms.
    The worst of it is, I lived in a house that had a copse adjacent to it that was littered with Blewits in the season.

    First time I discovered them they were picked and on the plate in less than half an hour – and about an hour later I developed painful stomach cramps followed by profuse sweating/shivering…and then a lengthy session of chucking up (pausing only to check and re-check all my fungi books and a retained Blewit in case I’d got it wrong).

    You’d think that would have put me off for life – but oh no, I did the same thing the following year on the basis that I may not have cooked them properly the first time around.
    Nope. Cramps, sweats, chucking up.

    Met up with Antonio Carluccio at a local fête the following year and mentioned my sorry experience – and it was he who told me that some folks just can’t eat them (shortly before asking me where I’d found them…).

    I got caught by them one last time.
    Ordered a wild mushroom starter in a pub and got taken ill later that evening. As no-one else in our group took ill it seemed likely that the mushrooms were to blame – so we rang the pub up the next day to ask what mushrooms had been used. Sure enough, there were Blewits in the mix.

    The good news is that if you find you’re similarly allergic, you won’t die…but you’ll have a very disagreeable couple of hours. The bad news is that you’d probably be wise to avoid wild mushroom dishes when eating out…unless you can be positively assured no Blewits have been used.

  5. C. Kessel says:

    I found a cluster of them in our pile of leaves from this fall.

  6. Mon says:

    I found one yesterday in the remains of the compost heap. I had pulled it before realising what it was. I’ve put it back so that it can decompose there.

  7. Leo Ushanoff says:

    I found these a couple of week ago here in Georgia (Borjomi). I did not care much for the taste to be honest.

  8. Tracey Cowell says:

    I think I have found a wood blewit, pale violet cap gills and stem does not seem to have a ring or veil but I only picked an older one growing under an oak tree in leaf litter but have not got spores from it yet, I could only see about 5 or 6 close by and couldn’t see a ring of them

  9. Robert Malcolm Kay says:

    Found a couple of clusters of these today: November 27th: my birthday as it happens. It s a great mushroom for late in the season, and seems to like leaf litter.

  10. Kristy says:

    Hey all Good people everywhere,🙋 Hope you are Well?. So now just this year Finding thru out our farm, in Hazlehurst Georgia. I’ve never seen before . I had to do much research as people need to take more pictures of all stages of the growh. As it was difficult for myself to be sure what I had here? Iam the guinea pig, No one else cares 4 mushrooms, Shame. But more for me. They just started appearing around Aug- Sept thus far of 2022. Pretty looking mushroom.They start lilac ~lavender , however they turn out to a pinkish color as they mature I’ve noticed. Good Mushroom hunting Y’all. Don’t forget love another 🫂😘

    1. Marlow Renton says:

      Thanks for the love but never eat mushrooms without IDing them first, there are deadly poisonous mushrooms out there.

  11. Christa says:

    Seem to have found a lot in NE england this week that are barely purple at all or completely without purple colouring – but all the other hallmarks, especially the orange-juicey smell. Is there any way I’ve found something else? Or perhaps is this a slightly anaemix variant? Cap looks right , feels just right… smell delicious…

    1. Eric Biggane says:

      There are a few pale Lepistas that grow in the UK with no purple colouring. Lepista irina or Lepista panaeolus are two possible suspects. A lot of mushrooms can have white variants so they may be Blewits.

  12. Steve says:

    Hi – I have found some Wood Blewitts over the last few weeks growing in leaf litter. They fit all the identification pointers. There were some very new ones which removed the possibility of them being webcaps. The smell was mushroomy although I couldn’t pick up on a perfumed smell.
    My question is this – do they sometimes taste a little earthy? Not in an unpleasant way, just that I get an earthy taste along with the mushroomy flavour. I’ve eaten a fair few over the last few weeks with no adverse reaction – always well cooked.
    Thanks for the excellent website – I also have your foraging guide and would love to do a course at some point.

    1. Eric Biggane says:

      I know what you mean by earthy, it’s nothing to worry about.

  13. Simon Rous says:

    I just found (on a very wet 26 November 2022 in Devon, England) a bunch of beautiful blewits, from above shiny, purple, bulbous and rather like kidneys or some other animal organ. The gills underneath are a delicate finely structured violet. Of the family I am the only member who is going to eat them. I have not seen any recipes on this string, but assume that sautéed in butter is best. If I’ve got the ID wrong you may be the last to hear from me, so à la prochaine or maybe adieu. PS: Just saw “View all recipes” below

  14. Tom says:

    I found some of what I thought were wood blewits based on the features listed on this website but closer examination and comparison with other sources reveals that they are in fact sordid blewits. They are also edible so while it’s nothing to worry about from a culinary point of view I’m quite surprised they aren’t listed under “possible confusions”.

    The most obvious differences with sordid blewits are that the caps are more vividly hued and that they are a little smaller. What gave it away to me though was the smell – I have a very sensitive nose so was rather surprised not to detect much more than an ordinary ‘mushroomy’ aroma about them – I feel sure from various descriptions and from memories of eating them as a child that wood blewits would be more ‘fragrant’ though I haven’t found any yet this season to compare!

    1. Axl says:

      i found that they didn’t really smell to start with but after a little while in the basket they developed a sweet orange juice smell with a slight perfume smell. not sure if anyone else has picked up the smell of orange juice but it was quite pleasant and was very tasty cooked with few other mushrooms in a creamy sauce

  15. Peter Crozier says:

    Found a large group amongst beech trees on Ranmore Common near Dorking on a walk to Polesden Lacey. Prepared by cooking in butter with a little onion and seasoning & served on toast! Delicious aroma and flavour

    Peter C

  16. David Penny says:

    Found what I initially thought were Wood Blewits in a copse of beach not far from others I’d found a few days before. These, however, looked just a little different, enough to make me cautious anyway, and had a trace of rust colouring on the stem – though just the barest trace, I’d add, after recent rain. They also lacked the fragrance, but it was a cold day! I very nearly just fried them up with some Penny Buns hoping for a feast, but with your advice nagging at my conscience I thought, no, do a spore test. Sure enough, dark, rust brown spores. I’d actually picked some Bruising Webcaps. I’m newish to foraging, so it’s taught me the benefits of doing the checks and not ignoring telltale indicators in the, ‘hope you’re right’, or expectation of a good feed. Great website.

  17. Zachary Terrence McHargue says:

    i just found some in Bonanza Oregon today and last week from 04/04/2024 – 04/09/2024.

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