Posted 2 years ago
Fungi are one of my favourite things on this planet. For a start, they are a form of life which is neither strictly an animal or a vegetable (I can relate to that). They can be deadly poisonous or rare delicacies (truffles). They can look cute, weird, fanciful, scary, or downright grotesque. I love how they pop up overnight, like silent visitors going about their mysterious business, under cover of darkness, in gloomy nooks & crannies, rising from a rotting carpet of leaf litter or erupting on dead wood, in quiet explosions of life...but not as we know it.
They are what the are, & they do what they do.
Having lived in the Mountains for almost two years now, I've come to recognise the spots where they return each year. This year, they've arrived earlier...for despite the dry & scorching summer just past, the last couple of months have been consistently wet. So I looked back at last year's photos of the Amanita Muscaria that pop up under the crab apple tree on the grass verge out the front of my house, & saw that they dated from April 17. So almost a month's difference for this year's crop. Last autumn was very warm & dry by comparison to this year. Many of the trees are also losing their leaves much earlier.
Fourth photo shows a species which I hadn't seen before in my garden, Hygrocybe miniata. These are extremely small, about the size of a push pin, but their vivid colour lends them a magnetic presence nonetheless.