Sunday, September 3, 2023

Fungus Among Us.


The upside to this rain soaked summer has been the prolific varieties of fungus popping up amongst the landscape day after day. As you may have picked up from previous blog posts, mushrooms are a big fascination and area of discovery on the homestead.  From inoculating logs, burying spawn plugs, making mushroom beds and diving into indoor cultivation along with constantly wandering the landscape and working on identifying our findings. This summer has been full of discoveries and dinner delicacies as we hone our foraging skills and broaden our identification methods through research via books, websites and apps.

As a self proclaimed newbie to the mycosphere, I am not going to add many labels to the following pictures in an effort to not share false information about our finds.  I would urge anyone reading this that finds themselves interested in foraging to approach the subject of ingesting with hesitancy and doubt as there are some species of fungus that can cause severe sickness and in very rare cases death if done so in a haphazard and careless way. That being said I urge you to dive in deep and learn about the magic of the fungi kingdom. It is full of rabbitholes of mythology, history and unexplored worlds of the magical networks that we are just recently learning about. 

As you can see from this array of pics, there has been quite the abundance of specimens to dig into including this Wooly Chanterelle that was our most recent find.

Occasionally if there is an abundance of specimens, I'll collect a few to get closer inspections of and sometimes create a spore print and observe color variations as the fruiting bodies evolve in a more controlled environment.

The positive side to all this observing and exploring is finding positive ID's of some pretty delicious finds including this flush of oyster mushrooms. 

Along with some oysters we have found a small abundance of chanterelles and my favorite find has been a handful of delicious lobster mushrooms!

Along with foraging we have been successful with a few indoor cultivations including this yummy flush of Royal Trumpets. With a busy gardening season the indoor portion of our mushroom project has taken a pause but I am planning on starting some more cultures for indoor projects as the autumn arrives and winter makes being inside a bit more appealing!

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