Monday, December 15, 2008

A Fungus Among Us

From the stump of decaying oak tree, on a northern Virginia wooded mountain.

At the base of the same oak. My field guide indicates these are Orange Jack O'Lanterns.

The gill structure on this 9 inch specimen was particularly beautiful.

There are four or five identifiable species on this rotting branch from a Black Locust tree in our front yard.

I was delighted when my friend and fellow blogger Linda reported that Beatrix Potter was a mycologist. I have been a fungus lover from childhood, and even considered this for college studies. I've always held the firm belief that fairies do sit under mushrooms, and if you can find one of the bright red ones in a forest, you may get the chance to chat with Queen Mab. Several very rainy days in September produced a beautiful crop of specimens in and around our neighborhood.

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