Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Fungi Forage

You might remember a couple of weeks back I mentioned I went on fungi foraging. This was an organised walk and I enjoyed it so much I was planning on going again to a different area. Unfortunately I missed this second walk, the friend I was going with went away and I got caught up with other things so I'm just going to show you what I saw on that first walk.
This guy, Justin Smith is a mycologist (fungi expert) and he told us what we were looking at. He does lots of talks and research and as one would expect the proper names for all the fungi just roll off his tongue. I didn't even try and remember them and in any case most had common names which, of course, I've already forgotten and did I think to take a pen with me~ no how stupid!
Roger Phillips has has produced a number of books over the past 25 years and he has a very good website where you can learn more about the interesting fungi you might find where you live.
The top ones I do recall are Shaggy Incaps and they are poisonous. The fungi in the bottom left picture can be eaten and my friend took them home. We saw lots of clumps of the brown fungus.

The bottom left picture shows fungi called 'King Arthur's Cakes' named because of the legend. These are very hard and can be used for burning.

The pink one I think might be edible and has an odd smell. You might just be able to see some of the spores in the photo on the left

Here is some Jelly Ear fungus (name self explanatory) which is cultivated and widely used in parts of Asia. It's apparently quite chewy and no I didn't try it. The other photo has a little nut hidden in the end of a tree stump, we decided this was the work of a squirrel.

The red fungus was the most unusual (apparently) and was the last one we found right at the end of the walk, unfortunately I could not get a very good photo as it was nestling in the bottom of a tree and I didn't fancy lying on the ground!

This last picture is fungi that I found a few days after the walk growing by the wall just outside my house. We also had a few stray ones growing in the lawn.

It was a very interesting walk and I really wish I had been better prepared to take notes, maybe next year! Anyway hope you enjoy seeing the photos.

November 6th 2006: Echo Lake



At 6/11/07 10:04, Blogger Deborah said...

Oh I would so love to do something like that! Really cool. As it is I bought one of those mushroom growing kits and am expecting my first harvest sometimes next week supposedly. I am yet to be convinced! ;-) Green fingers I have not!

At 6/11/07 13:55, Blogger lisa's chaos said...

You are a lady after my heart, as you know I love fungus! Well, taking photos of it anyway. I recognize some of those but had no clue what they were and if they were edible.

BTW, I put up a photo of the Old English Cheese if you're still curious. :)

At 6/11/07 13:57, Blogger Lil Mouse (Jill) said...

that's cool. i wouldnt eat anything - well that's not true. I wouldnt let anyone ELSE eat anything other than a MOREL in our area because that's about all that's safe for sure, but i love seeing the different kinds, especially if we're in another area of our large country, you get different things. we saw a bright pink one in Wisconsin, I think it was from the red leaves that had fallen from the trees that fall. Awesome.

At 6/11/07 15:26, Blogger Asha said...

Very nice. So many varieties there we don't even notice most of the time!:))

At 6/11/07 15:29, Blogger frannie said...

that is so interesting! I love the last pic of the ones by your home.

At 6/11/07 15:38, Anonymous Lisa said...

That looks like such a neat thing to do! I'll have to see if we have anything like that around, I think it would be so much fun.

At 6/11/07 15:51, Blogger john.g. said...

My friend, the Poacher keeps us well supplied with mushrooms. The Bluelegs are just emerging , they are georgeous, especially in soups.

Not sure about the Ostrich nest at the end though!

At 6/11/07 17:18, Blogger Sam said...

do you remember when i went fungi foraging with the girls when we were teens. I did eat a couple of my finds but I was nervous.

which reminds me - photo albums - maybe this is the the thing you can lug across the atlantic for me?

At 6/11/07 17:35, Anonymous Robin (the PENSIEVE one) said...

There's a fungus among us!!

You post your photos in the coolest of ways...I really need to take some time to learn how to do that, but I'm always on the run instead...:/

At 6/11/07 17:57, Blogger ChrisB said...

I will be interested to know if those kits are worth the effort as I've often been tempted.

Lisa c ~ if I had a better camera I might have taken better photos. I'm hoping to buy a new camera when I visit my daughter later this month.

Jill I have to say I'm not keen to eat anything that I'm not 100% certain of.

Asha I was amazed we found so many and there were several others where the photos were too poor to publish!

frannie it really was a huge mound and looked rather funny on the pavement (sidewalk).

lisa it would be interesting to see the differences between the different climates!

john ostrich nest indeed!!

Sam I do remember I was looking at the photos not long ago.

Of course I will bring your albums but I will then loose my blogging material~ damn!!

robin I used my comic life prog. on my mac and have only just started experimenting with it.

At 6/11/07 18:19, Blogger her indoors said...

never knew there were so many different varities, if the guide assured me they were safe i would have tried them, love mushrooms, raw and cooked mmm.
wonderful photos of them all

At 6/11/07 21:37, Blogger Sally Lomax said...

Wow! Great photos. Would be nice to know which ones you could eat....

At 6/11/07 23:55, Blogger cookiecrumb said...

Great coincidence (must be that time of year): Cranky and I just devoured a lunch of foraged fungi. We're still alive, but it's only been a few hours.

(Sam! You have to read that book I sent you; great climax about found mushrooms, but don't skip ahead -- the entire book is a hilarious foodie romp.)

At 7/11/07 03:47, Blogger Kila said...

Very interesting. Eating it wouldn't interest me, though.

(My oldest boy is going to LOVE this post!)

At 7/11/07 03:55, Blogger Alix said...

Great post - you take such good photos
I wouldn't eat any of them though, I am soooo neurotic about food!

At 7/11/07 09:13, Blogger ChrisB said...

her indoors you are a brave woman apparent one of the ones we saw can be eaten but not with alcohol and they were used in a restaurant and people were quite ill~ so I'm less trusting!

Sally the quantities we saw were really small so not enough to take home a bag full.

CC hope you survived!! Sam had always loved mushrooms.

kila I hope you son enjoys the photos.

alix some people did try a couple~ not me though!

At 7/11/07 09:14, Blogger ChrisB said...

Oh dear quick typing and I made errors sorry folks but I'm sure you know what I meant.

At 7/11/07 09:20, Blogger Beccy said...

What did you do with the ones by the house?

At 7/11/07 09:30, Blogger Steffi said...

Great post and very good pictures!I know on such mushroom tour´s you can learn a lot about it and it´s interesting.I had such tour at my school time too.

At 7/11/07 15:18, Blogger The Artist formerly Known as Purpleworms (!) said...

I SO enjoyed seeing all these fungi and think we have several very similar species (or had several similar species) in our woods. It is freezing every night now, so my fungus forays are over for the year. I bet that red one is the same as the one I found - do you remember anything about it?

Deborah - you need brown fingers for fungi.

At 7/11/07 16:13, Blogger ChrisB said...

beccy those were noy edible

steffi it was a really interesting walk.

PP I'm kicking myself because the red one has a common name which I was convinced I would remember. It is not edible.

At 7/11/07 17:56, Blogger The Artist formerly Known as Purpleworms (!) said...

Wow Purple Person? - Is it Fly agaric (usually that has spots)?

At 7/11/07 19:00, Blogger my4kids said...

There are a lot of different types of fungi around there aren't there?!
We have a lot also but I'm not sure of what types. It would be interesting to take a walk like that and have someone explain that. I may have to see if there is someone who can do that to incorporate into our home school.

At 7/11/07 21:11, Anonymous min said...

I did the kit and after weeks and weeks of care I got a couple of handfuls of oyster mushrooms that probably would have cost me about as much as the kit.
But the coolness factor was well worth it!

At 7/11/07 22:45, Blogger ChrisB said...

purpleworms I'll put a useful link in your comments.

At 11/11/07 15:16, Blogger Blue Momma said...

This is so interesting. I was terribly fascinated by this kind of thing as a child. We used to go camping a good bit and I'd see so many differnt fungi, though I don't guess I really knew what they were then.

I remember bringing a particularly great one home with me once and varnishing it so I could keep it! I don't seem to recall how that turned out, though....

At 18/11/07 02:54, Blogger elena jane said...

as much as i detest even thinking about fungi, the photos and the walk are really pretty!! :-)


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