Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Mason Neck State Park - Part 2 - Mushrooms

I love mushrooms and this time of the year I love nothing more than to venture out and see what's growing in the woods. I also love to eat mushrooms but not any that I pick, and only the store bought ones. I have no clue what is edible and what is not, and even though I read various articles on identification I just don't trust my own ability.

My mum used to buy ones from the grocers when we were kids. She called them field mushrooms. Some were the size of dinner plates and were absolutely delicious - a great nostalgia food moment here. These days I love to eat Portobello's.

Of course there are a few wild mushrooms that are absolutely deadly and many more are mildly poisonous, some can even cause hallucinations. Am I ever going to pick and eat any wild mushrooms? Not a snowball's chance in you-know-where, though I do admire people who are knowledgeable about such things because I bet the ones they pick taste out of this world.

In the meantime I'll stick to my store-bought kind, but still keep looking for the ones in the woods. They are so very interesting to study and to photograph.

Don't forget you can enlarge any of these photos to get a better look.


"Nature alone is antique and the oldest art a mushroom."
~Thomas Carlyle~

Just for fun I thought I would add this photo, one of the biggest mushroom I have ever seen. I found it online.


25 comments:

gigihawaii said...

I have not acquired a taste for portobellos, but I do like button mushrooms that I purchase from the store.

Sharon said...

I would be so afraid of wild mushrooms too, store stuff or nothing. I I used to make stuffed mushrooms, no idea where the recipe card went. I just remember that I made them and liked them. ;-)

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

I think you're smart not to try any wild ones. Although I love them, I wouldn't trust myself either. Western Oregon has a regular season for chanterelles but we know of some people who thought that was what they were finding and instead they ingested poisonous ones....end of story unfortunately. ONe survivor said they looked so much alike.

They are beautiful to photography though and you do a wonderful job. They do seem magical and its easy to see how all the myths about them sprang up!

The Elephant's Child said...

And aren't their colours amazing? We used to pick and eat mushrooms when I was small, but I would not do it now. A shame - because I do remember them tasting wonderful.

Craig said...

They look fantastic Denise but I'm with you. I'd never pick wild ones as I'd be sure to poison myself and everyone around me!

diane b said...

They are fascinating fungi. I wouldn't eat them either.Wow that is a whopper.

Valerie said...

I too love Portobellos. We have a book on how to identify mushrooms. I took it out with me one day and got nowhere. No, I'll stick to buying them from a shop.

ascu75 aka Don said...

I love mushrooms and as a kid used to pick the biggest dinner plate mushrooms on the farm, but them took the skins off and ruined them I still like peeling big mushrooms fifty years later. Nice shots Denise

Sunray Gardens said...

That is the biggest mushroom I've ever seen. I would not try any I saw out though as I would not know which are safe.
Cher Sunray Gardens

jabblog said...

Mushrooms are beautiful and all too often deadly. We see lots of mushroom pickers in our forest - they are Polish, usually, and know what they're looking for.

Janet said...

Beautiful photographs and what variety !

grammie g said...

Hi Denise...I'm with you when it comes o wild mushrooms....give me store bought please!!
Amazing and interesting fungi, you have some nice shot's of some with real character!!

Grace

Out on the prairie said...

Lovely shots, but none edible in your pics. In the spring i chase after morels, a tasy treat when one finds them.In Italy it is a job for some talented individuals.

Mama-Bug said...

All so beautiful, and deadly! Give me the store-bought ones please!

Janie said...

Nice photos of the mushrooms, Denise. Wow, that last one is huge!
I find mushrooms fascinating, but I've never dared eat any of the ones I've seen in the wild.

Francisca said...

I adore wild mushrooms, to eat, I mean, but I'm not crazy enough to pick them myself, knowing how mortal the wrong kind can be. They sure are a delight to photograph, just as you have... and that last one, WoW!

imac said...

Plenty of room there mush,lol.

Suz said...

oh they are such pretty things
and Im with you...store bought only

Andrew said...

I will be searching fot Puffballs during the coming weeks... my biggest fungi to scavenge!!! Lovely fried!

Valerie said...

What a great collection of mushrooms, Denise and how astonishing is the size of the one in your last picture?!

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Denise, I agree with you that it's safer to buy store bought mushrooms. There are so many colorful and unusual species to see in the wild, but not to eat. I recognize on type in your photos as a puffball which I believe is poisonous.

(Diane) Bibliophile By the Sea said...

Love all the nature shots. Mushrooms are popping up everywhere. Love the turtles.

Margaret Cloud said...

Boy, that is one big mushroom. My family likes the Morales mushroom. I never knew there were so many different mushrooms. I enjoyed all the pictures and the color of each one. Every Spring we would go with my Aunt Izzy, up to her sisters farm and go out back to the woods and hunt Morales. After you would spot the first one it got easier to find them. I always enjoy coming here.

Denise said...

Loved reading all your comments, thank you :)

DJ said...

Those are beautiful! Some years ago I bought a book and went on walks trying to idenfity mushrooms . But I would never eat one found in nature, much safer to stick to the store variety :)