It’s easy to miss the little things here in Costa Rica because there are so many wonderful things to see. Costa Rica is like eye candy. It can be overload. Here is a shot of some tiny mushrooms, little fairy umbrellas. You can find these by the waterfalls near Arenal Volcano.

costa rica waterfall mushrooms

brian froud fairies holding mushrooms

Brian Froud illustration

I did a little research and found out that these mushrooms are called Fairy Ink Cap mushrooms (Coprinellus disseminatus). Fitting, seeing as how I thought they looked like little fairy umbrellas. The mushrooms lack a scent or flavor, and are edible, but not worth the effort. The biggest the mushroom cap will grow to is a diameter of 2 cm. The stems are hollow and will not grow longer than 4 cm. They are also very fragile and will crumble if handled.

Fairy Ink Cap mushrooms grow in clusters, near the base of stumps and decaying wood. You can see them sometimes by the hundreds near the waterfalls in Costa Rica, in spots that are touched by mist, but not by flowing water.

These tiny mushrooms remind me of one of my favorite illustrators, Brian Froud, who worked on masterpieces such as Labyrinth and The Dark Crystal. Check it out, I even found one of his illustrations in which the fairies are sporting these mushrooms!