For the budding or part-time horticulturist or naturalist, the fact that scientific nomenclature (Carl Linnaeus) is often not literal – maybe at times misleading – can be frustrating. Think Cornus florida (flowering dogwood – not dogwood native to the state of Florida), or Magnolia virginiana (Sweet Bay Magnolia – native not just to the state of Virginia, but to the entire U.S. Atlantic coastal plain all the way up to New York).
Another example is Stereum hirsutum, the scientific name for one of the Turkey Tail mushroom lookalikes. The amusing fact here is that one of the key traits in differentiating Stereum hirsutum from the true Turkey Tail (Trametes versicolor) is the underside of Stereum hirsutum is smooth, not porous like Trametes versicolor or gilled like some other bracket mushrooms, and definitely not hairy, shaggy, wooly or fuzzy.
So how does hirsutum fit?