Crowds in the Central Highlands province of Dak Lak are flocking to a house in Buon Ma Thuot to contemplate a huge Lingzhi mushroom weighing 220 kg.
>> In Vietnam, homegrown mushrooms are gaining in popularity The mushroom, with the scientific name Ganoderma Lucidum, is 1.7 meters long, 1.2 meters wide and 0.6 meters tall, said Dao Duc Dai, 27, a resident in the city’s Tu An Ward, who owns the huge mushroom, which is highly valued for its health benefits.
“On October 1, my mother-in-law at Farm 717 in Ea Kar District told me that a farmer had discovered a huge mushroom on a mountain and wanted to sell it,” Dai said.
Dai then went to look at the mushroom and agreed to buy it for VND200 million (US$9,400), he said.
Dai hired eight young men to dig the mushroom out of the ground and load it on to a hired van to bring home, to the surprise of everyone who saw it.
The front part of the mushroom looks like a toad sticking its tongue out, and its back has holes that look like caves.
Hundreds of curious people now flock to Dai’s house every day to see the enormous mushroom, and many of them photograph or videotape it or pose for photos. After Dai posted about the mushroom on Facebook, a person in Hanoi offered to buy it for VND700 million ($32,920), and a Chinese national wanted to buy it for VND1 billion ($47,012). However, Dai refused to sell it. “I am waiting for the mushroom to be evaluated in terms of age and quality so that I can obtain a place in the Vietnam Record Books.” Lingzhi mushrooms, also called Reishi, Lin zi, or mushroom of immortality, is an important component of the traditional medical systems of China, Japan, Korea, and other Asian countries. It is used to increase energy, stimulate the immune system, and promote health, according to medical websites. Reishi mushrooms are used to treat viral infections such as the flu (influenza), swine flu, and avian flu; lung conditions including asthma and bronchitis; heart disease; kidney disease; liver disease, and even cancer, according to WebMD. It is also used for HIV/AIDS, altitude sickness, chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), trouble sleeping (insomnia), stomach ulcers, poisoning, and herpes pain. Other uses include reducing stress and preventing fatigue, WebMD said.