Two were in Hudson County and one each in Monmouth and Ocean Countieds, but the threat was easy to see in other areas in recent days.
In Philadelphia, a patch of more than two dozen white-capped mushrooms rose on tall stems from a mulch bed Monday behind the Holocaust memorial sculpture at 16th and Arch.
In South Jersey, assorted fungi were seen on lawns in Haddonfield, Westmont, Pennsauken and Cherry Hill. Some were five inches across - or more.
At one Haddon Heights home - the author's - more than a half-dozen shapes of fungi were thriving over the weekend, ranging in color from red to orange to brown to gray to white, in size up to eight inches across. Some were in a mulch pile, others in part of the lawn rich in chips from a ground-up street stump.
Among them were hundreds - yes, hundreds - of tiny dark-gray cups barely visible without a close-up look.
Probably bird's nest fungus, Boylan said.
Another type might have been dog vomit mold, she said.
When there's a lot of rain you'll see a lot more mushrooms, especially where they can find decaying material - in woods, mulch beds, or even lawns where buried roots are rotting.
Although most mushrooms are not poisonous, the toxic types are difficult to differentiate, even by experts, Boylan said.
Cooking won't render them safe either.
Most commonly, the victims are either curious children, who don't know better, or self-styled mushroom "experts," who think they do, according to the Poison Control Center at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.
Symptoms, which can come on immediately or be delayed up to 24 hours, range from drowsiness and confusion, to stomachaches, to heart, liver and kidney damage.
Most deaths are from eating Amanitas or "death caps," which can "easily be mistaken for nonpoisonous species," according to the center.
More typical are cases involving some combination of nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and stomach pain, with symptoms lasting one to two days.
Call 1-800-222-1222 to reach the round-the-clock Poison Help Hotline, which connects to 57 centers around the nation, including CHOP's.
For more about poison prevention, go to www.chop.edu/service/poison-control-center
Contact staff writer Peter Mucha at 215-854-4342 or firstname.lastname@example.org.