One of the few interesting things about having 20 inches of rain in the last two weeks is that there are mushrooms everywhere. So when the air was heavy with water but not actually raining for a few hours, Brandon, my brumby, Getty and I set off on another mushroom quest in the woods. I should note: everything else about having so much water around here is a drag. Our basement is flooded and I am paranoid about the town dam breaking. Trees are toppling because their roots are too wet. If I thought New England was an old and moldy place a month ago, it is even moldier (and older) now. I'd like to tell Gene Kelly that I do not sing in the rain, and even if I did, it would not be a glorious feeling. No, I am quite ready for some sunshine and dry air.
But this walk was really fun, and highly successful. Here you see that Lilly doesn't care at all about mushrooms. But she is interested in ferns..... I made the mistake of giving her a mushroom to sniff but she thought it was an apple and her lips were smacking at it greedily. I did not let her eat it, just in case it was poisonous!
I always like to see a mushroom with a pretty little petticoat like this one. This Amanita virosa is very poisonous, filled with toxins with names like amatoxin and phallotoxins. Heh heh, yes, you heard me.
I only know the names of any mushrooms, incidentally, because Brandon was with me. I could not identify a mushroom to save my life! No pun intended. But I like these a lot because they are small and delicate and commonly called Angel Wings. Isn't that rather dear? So many mushrooms are perfectly content to grow out of an old dead, log. The real name of this mushroom is Pleurocybella porrigens.
Well, this picture isn't that great, but this is another mushroom that likes living on a dead wood. It's called Hericium abietis and we had a bunch of these for dinner a few nights ago. Brandon and Kestrel gobbled them up like they were some kind of forest nectar. Bleccch, the flavor was too strong for me. Plus, they look a little like brains.
I thought these big ploppy mushrooms were like horse poop on the trail!! Brandon is not sure what they are.
But really, mushrooms are so darn interesting. Look at this giant Amanita. It was quite tall. Maybe 10 inches high.
Oh now look, here we stumble upon an Equus ferus caballus nibbling her medicinal tetracycline dinner. I devour her all right. I devour her with hugs and kisses.
On the mushroom quest, this mare was sooo good. Ambling along, following Brandon, sniffing the soil. The only incident we had was completely my fault and began when a large and frighteningly bedazzled-looking spider landed out of nowhere (out of nowhere, I tell you!) on my saddle bag. Now, I am very afraid of spiders and when I saw this one with her striped legs and huge body, I SCREAMED a very panicky scream. It was also a sustained scream, I am sorry to report. The first second, my brumby was OK with it. But then she decided too it was scary and needed to take off running. Brandon, who is afraid of horses if you recall, turned around to see what the commotion was and all he saw was a giant paint mare running toward him. Oy vey.
I still shudder thinking about that spider.
Here is an ad for a free horse that appeared in our town's newspaper. Anyone interested? Oh, if only I were a billionaire!
Mushrooms in fridge! (Those red ones are lobster mushrooms--yum!)
Let's hope tomorrow is a sunny day.