The Toadstool

by farrah on October 9, 2013 · 14 comments

I wasn’t going to post anything today, but I really want to jot down the fact that yesterday we saw this little guy on the way to school…

Since moving here, I quickly learned that this red and white mushroom (in cartoon form) can be found just about anywhere there are things for kids. Let me clarify: it’s sort of like a symbol of childhood, this ‘toadstool’ mushroom dude. He’s adorable and I would really like to know the whole story behind him here in the Netherlands. He’s on The Efteling’s website (this is a crazy looking Disney-esque theme park nearby that is fairy/gnome/dragon/toadstool filled) and we have yet to go.

With the scientific name ‘Amanita Muscaria’ it is also known as the Fly Agaric. Over here in Europe (and the UK I believe) this mushroom is littered in nursery rhymes and seen in cute little gnome stories for kids.


I saw these yesterday with a few others sprinkled around for good measure. Is it the season? What do people do with them? Do they have these where you are?

{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

1 When I Blink October 9, 2013 at 11:37 am

OMG, it’s straight out of Alice In Wonderland. That little thing is adorable!


2 farrah October 9, 2013 at 1:41 pm

I know it! Too bad I’m done having babies because…nursery theme!


3 Ellen October 9, 2013 at 1:13 pm

Hello, I found your blog a while ago and I love reading your stories! Now I have an answer for you (I think) so I finally leave a comment. This mushroom is in a all-known children song :”Op een grote paddestoel rood met witte stippen…” I try and translate it for you: On a big mushroom, red with white dots, was gnome”Longlegs” (?!), rocking back and forward, “krak” said then the mushroom, with a big sigh, Hopla gnome “Longlegs” with his legs in the air. Your children maybe know the song already!

groeten, Ellen


4 farrah October 9, 2013 at 1:36 pm

Thank you Ellen!!! I don’t know how this hasn’t made it over the pond- it’s a very cute, non-cartooney person, animal, etc. I love it and I’m going to ask the boys- they were also super excited when we saw them, and then went by them again today 🙂


5 Ellen October 9, 2013 at 1:57 pm

Oh and gnomes live in these kind of mushrooms! But everybody knows that I guess…(or is that something Dutch?)


6 farrah October 9, 2013 at 2:01 pm

Honestly, I do not know- I didn’t know that gnomes lived in trees either- so you are providing me with useful information 🙂 My boys are going to love that I know this now!


7 Ellen October 9, 2013 at 3:44 pm

Near Uden (also in Noord-Brabant) is natuurcentrum De Maashorst where you can make a walk along “het kabouterpad”. Very nice thing to do on a dry day in the herfstvakantie! And thera are other nature things to do and to play with aswell


8 Leighann October 9, 2013 at 2:10 pm

I’ve never seen anything like this and I love it! Adorable.


9 farrah October 10, 2013 at 5:45 am

They’re pretty fun!


10 Karla October 9, 2013 at 6:52 pm

I had never given much thought as to where gnomes live but now I know! Farrah, if I ever start having babies maybe I’ll do a mushroom/gnome themed nursery and I’ll send you photos since you are finished with nurseries! However, do you think it would be wrong of me to not do a pony themed nursery when I live in a barn with ponies? Perhaps that would be too much pony. Can you really have too much pony as a child?


11 farrah October 10, 2013 at 5:46 am

YES Karla! Please do! And no, you can never have too much pony. Just don’t let the pony eat the mushrooms as they are poisonous!


12 Mrs. Chasing the Donkey October 9, 2013 at 7:32 pm

I really have no idea if these are safe to eat – does not look like it.
And canI be honest and say I had NO IDEA that these types of shrooms were even real. I thought it was a Disney thing. Now I know better 🙂


13 farrah October 10, 2013 at 5:47 am

THEY ARE NOT. I did some research and sure enough, they’re poisonous. So don’t get any crazy ideas to come up here, take them back to Croatia and cook up something fancy.


14 Mrs. Chasing the Donkey October 12, 2013 at 9:00 pm

Phew! Thanks for the warning. I recall being told once that the prettier they are the more poisonous. So it looks like I’ll be just cooking with the ugly ones. You can keep these to admire.


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