Round and Round

I know my brain is not normal, and I’m OK with that.

Last week I went out to take care of my mushroom logs, and holy shiitake, I had tons of fungi to harvest. Before I could remove any shrooms from the logs I had to take some photos to mark the occasion. I crouched down on the ground and snapped this…

Holy Shiitake, Batman - I think it's ready to eat!

Holy Shiitake, Batman – I think it’s ready to eat!

I suppose most people would put down the camera and grab the butter and garlic, but not me. The sight of something round and smooth in the midst of the woods sent me off on a tangent. My right brain took over and I spent the next hour shooting round things. By the time I was finished it was dark and too late to harvest and saut̩ mushrooms. I had some Oreos and called it a night. What follows is my right-brained tangent Рsee if you can identify them all.

1. Ozark Treat

1. Ozark Treat

2. Happiness

2. Happiness

3. Pedal to the metal

3. Pedal to the Metal

4. Sparky

4. Sparky

5. It came before crossing the road

5. It came before crossing the road

6. Pogs went here

6. Pogs went here

7. Scratch

7. Scratch

8. The Source

8. The Source

9. Vrrrrom

9. Vrrrrom

10. Savor

10. Savor

11. Hammered

11. Hammered

12. Sweet

12. Sweet

13. Spirit

13. Spirit

14. Stang

14. Stang

15. Water

15. Water

15. Open

16. Open

17. Getting Warmer

17. Getting Warmer

18. Cellar

18. Cellar

19. Stumped

19. Stumped

19. Line

20. Line

21. Fair

21. Fair

22. Vintage

22. Vintage

23. Short Sighted

23. Short Sighted

OK – so some of them were pretty obvious – this should be pretty simple. Whoever gets them all right first in the comments wins an 8X10 print of their favorite (or if you don’t like any of them you can pick something from another post)

You guess – I’m gonna sauté some shrooms.

Ready. Set. Go!

 

 

A Fungus Among Us

Issac came along and pretty much ended a summer of drought in the Ozarks. We didn’t get a lot of rain, but it was a nice slow soaking – 3 inches over a couple of days. My grass came back to life and I considered mowing it for the first time since mid May. I noticed some large white blobs over by my cedar tree while I was clearing limbs while getting ready to mow.

I saw several odd round turban-shaped mushrooms underneath the cedar tree. They were growing in a circle about 6 feet across. A friend told me that this was called a fairy circle, for me it was an excuse to put off mowing another week while I waited to see its progress. It was also an excuse to take some photos of something living. Drought = no wildflowers, no lawn, no color. Imagine my excitement at seeing white blobs!

This shot is misleading – they are not actually larger than my terrier Velcro in the background, but they were quite large. Baseball-sized fungi…

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The fungi surface looked like flan that had been stretched to reveal a plush and fuzzy sub-layer.

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Over the course of the next 24 hours the ball opened and flattened into a disk the size of a salad plate. Perfectly round like one of those parasols you get in a fancy drink, only not so fun and colorful…

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All-in-all they were kind of boring, but you gotta work with what nature gives you. I thought I would try to impose some artsy angles on them to make them appear more dramatic. I got very dirty doing this.

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The details of their gills were pretty amazing – there are spider webs in there, or maybe tiny cob webs – a tiny microcosm…

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This is the view a field mouse or packrat might have as they approach one of these babies – reaching for the sky. I got very dirty getting this shot. I also was bitten by chiggers. There’s nothing I won’t do for art…

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Eye level to a rabbit, if my dogs would let a rabbit get this close.

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Enough already, I’m putting on some calamine and getting out the mower!