The weather defeated my wish for a log walk this week, but we need the rain, out of the last ten months only two have been above normal levels, reservoirs are worryingly low in the south east. So more rain is needed and winter rains come at the best time to replenish stocks.
What I hoped to see in the last week has been an autumnal profusion of fungi, but the dry weather is probably mainly responsible for the rather poor showing so far. My back catalogue of photographs of a fairly diverse range of fungi will have to do. If you can help by identifying them please let me know. Most were seen in the bumper season of 2006, an incredibly good year for them. Nearly all were found within five miles of home. The first one might be Psathyrella gracilis?
Fungi come in all shapes and sizes and colours, I thought these must be globs of chewing gum!
Sometimes it is the sheer profusion that is breath-taking, one side of a mature tree was just covered in them. Oudemansiella Mucida (Poached Egg Fungus).
Here is the most popular vision of a toadstool, Fly Agaric (Amanita muscaria), not as dangerous as it looks.
Turning to the more exotic, this one I think is the wood blewit (Clitocybe nuda) (not a trace of blue!).
Some have really bright colours that glow out of the forest floor. Russula Emetica (The Sickener?)
Stranger still are these two. The first is a Jelly Fungus : Calocera Viscosa - Yellow Stagshorn. The second not sure, they are both much smaller than the others.
Size wise, this group was spectacular.
The next group are variations on the more 'traditional' form, but each species has its own characteristics.
Parasol Mushroom (Lepiota Procera).
Oyster Mushroom (Pleurotus ostreatus)
Puff balls are always great fun. This one Calvatia Excipuliformis is no 'giant' but will still puff out clouds of spores if proded.
This next one shows what mushrooms are all about - spreading spores. The dark spores are so numerous that the adjacent nettles hare turned a sooty purple colour.
I hope you enjoyed this mycological feast, I hope to see a load more next year.