Hummingbird Point
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Hummingbird Point
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July 29th, 2018, 12:42 am #21

Went today after a week of rain.  My wife finally found our one and only chicken for the year!



A few chanterelles and bolettes too.



I always feel better when we find our totem animal, the eastern box turtle!



On the way home we swung by a spot where we had seen a patch of elderberry in bloom earlier this summer.  We got just shy of 5 lbs.  So, that's tomorrows project, making jelly...

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Forager
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July 29th, 2018, 2:31 am #22

Nice.  Don't lose hope for more Chicken - they fruit into October up here, likely no sooner in your woods.

Always glad to see the totem.  Beautiful score on the Elderberries, good going!
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Michael Bootz
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July 29th, 2018, 10:14 am #23

Thanks for the info on the slimes. Very interesting, and pretty wild indeed!
Pity they're not edible, I was wondering if the raspberry would infuse dishes with it's bright red color.
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Forager
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July 29th, 2018, 7:31 pm #24

More.

A cluster of  small Inkies -
Inkies.JPG
While visiting a different section of woods I noticed a surplus of Two-Color Boletes which will dry well and improve with age -
Two-Color Bolete Collection.JPG I couldn't  leave behind the attractive stone with the quartz strata.

The search for Slime Molds was not without a find - my wife locating this one which appears to be a Physarum, which in its fruiting stage takes on a hard, sooty (ie spore-bearing) form.  
Black Slime Mold - Possibly Physarum.JPG Some of these species travel up to one foot a day.  While reading up on this unique life form I found this on a page describing another Slime Mold... (https://microbewiki.kenyon.edu/index.ph ... lycephalum):

"A recent topic of interest and study, this organism has been found to have a form of external memory. As the mold grows and pulsates throughout its environment, it leaves behind a trail of slime marking where it has been (hence the name). When exploring a petri dish, it would not double back to where it has already been before. With no real brain or any way to internalize information, this organism essentially remembers or is reminded of where it has already been when it encounters its own slime again. This type of navigation can be likened to that of the pheromone trails used by ants or bees. Through experimentation, it has been found that slime mold can solve mazes and u-shaped traps (see below) to successfully locate a food source."

And another curiosity, the Bird's Nest Fungus -
Birds Nest Fungi.JPG Also called 'Splash Cups', the black 'eggs' (termed 'periodoles') are spore cases which get propelled up to 4' distance when a drop of rain hits the receptacle.  The periodole has a fine sticky cord a few inches long which catches onto a leaf or twig which spins it close to the snag where it remains.  Once properly 'ripe' the 'egg' opens to release the spores for dissemination by wind.  Quite the elaborate strategy.


And from 'eggs' of the 'bird's nest' I'll transition to Chicken.  Here's another one I took a couple of days ago (not shown, to avoid repetition) -
Slow-Cooked Chicken Mrm.JPG Slow cooked over a very low flame for about half an hour, in olive oil with onion, grated ginger, chives, s & p.  Simple, and superb.
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dixieshedhunter
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July 29th, 2018, 8:51 pm #25

Looking good.
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Forager
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August 4th, 2018, 1:28 am #26

Early August collections:

About a month late, the first appearance of a favorite - Lactarius hygrophoroides -
Milkies.JPG ...note the latex beading on the gills from a deliberate pass with my knife, substantiating the common name 'Milky'.

An uncommon Bolete in my area, the Gilled Bolete -
Gilled Bolete.JPG ...and here, the fertile surface:
Gilled Bolete, Fertile Surface.JPG At about 4 o'clock in the circle of 'gills', the crenulated pores may be glimpsed between the gill-like folds of tissue.

Some delicate Oysters and a woody Ganoderma -
Oysters and Ganoderma.JPG
Already shown but an exceptionally rare find, I cannot resist showing another young King Bolete -
B. edulis.JPG ...in this one the reticulum descended the stem.  This second one ups the tally to two more than I've found over the last too many years.

And lastly, one which is new to my eyes - the Suillus castanellus.  
Suillus castanellus.JPG
Inedible, and interesting for a Suillus in that it's cap is dry and not viscid as is common in this family.  I'm glad to make its acquaintance for its rich mocha color and beautiful descending pore pattern.
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Hummingbird Point
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August 4th, 2018, 2:17 pm #27

On the gilled boletes:  Any advice on how to best prepare them?  Found quite a few last year, but found them nasty tasting, so have been passing them up since then, although I think I do have a bag of dried ones.
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Forager
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August 4th, 2018, 2:52 pm #28

Keith we're on a similar page of taste experience.  I also do not favor them, it was included in this roster for its uniqueness (as was the Suillus).  Having said that, I have eaten them in mixed contexts where their grade of edibility is balanced and supported by others - sometimes I like things in food for their presentation value as well as for the micronutrients they bring which differ from 'favorites'.  

Although I have done them in mixed mushroom sautes, and vegetable-and-lentil soups with very approvable results I will not eat them on their own.  I am grateful to enjoy access to very many other more desirable ones.
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Forager
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August 5th, 2018, 6:47 pm #29

Regular soaking rains have called forth the uncommon as well as the regulars.

The Red-Cracked Bolete, which I've seen only once many years ago-
Boletus chrysenteron.JPG

Another first in my mycological experience, Frost's Bolete -
Boletus frostii.JPG ...one of the very few red-pored boletes which are edible.

And some corals, beginning with two Thelephora:

T. terrestris -
Thelephora terrestris.JPG
T. palmata among some Small Chanterels -
Thelaphora palmata and Small Chanterels.JPG ...the comment following the description of this mushroom described a scent which 'stinks to high heaven'.  Holding it close for an olfactory sample, this proved quite true.  A peculiar and uniquely offensive stench counterbalanced what I consider to be a beautifully formed and tinted mushroom.  Kindly pardon the blurry image, I thought it was merely my eyes tearing.

And Clavulina cristata -
Clavulina cristata.JPG Edible, innocent and mildly flavored with the slightest undertone of peppermint.

More from the same foray in the next post.
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Forager
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August 5th, 2018, 6:57 pm #30

Additional Boletes.

Tylopilus plumboviolaceus -
Tylopilus plumboviolaceus.JPG ...inedible but a visual delight.

Tylopilus badiceps -
Tylopilus badiceps.JPG ...this particular fruiting tended to emerge in pairs.  A fine edible which keeps well once dried (as is the case with most Boletes as they intensify with time in storage).

This rather shaggy Old Man of the Woods (Strobilomyces floccopus) -
Strobilomyces floccopus.JPG
And his cousin the Confusing Bolete (S.confusus)
Strobilomyces confusus.JPG
Some extras...

An inch-long toad -
Inch-Long Toad.JPG
And a ribbon within an ailing Beech -
Ribbon within Beech.JPG
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Michael Bootz
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August 7th, 2018, 5:18 pm #31

Just want to say that, although I cannot contribute anything, I really enjoy this topic and all the wonderful photos!
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Forager
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August 8th, 2018, 1:41 am #32

Thank you Michael.  I'm certain that I'm not alone in declaring how much I miss seeing your own photographs.  The volume of your efforts which were lost from the Nature topic in the Artwork forum is painful.
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Forager
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August 12th, 2018, 1:55 am #33

A couple of additions.

First, revisiting the remarkably beautiful Frost's Bolete.  Having found more youthful samples I was treated to one of its signature ID features, the rich deep red cap, and beads of amber colored exudation from the pore surface -
Frost's Bolete with Amber Exudation.JPG
...to my eye they sparkle like gems, but perhaps this is better seen first-hand.

Next the uncommon Scaly Hedgehog, Hydnum imbricatus (aka Sarcodon imbricatus) -
Sarcodon  imbricatus.JPG ...a close relative of the more common Hedgehog or Sweet Tooth, Hydnum repandum.  Most regrettably it is nowhere near as desirable as an edible compared to its highly delectable cousin (which itself is painfully uncommon).  Having run some previous culinary experiments with it in the past I'll agree with this evening's reading of a consensus concerning this one as an irrevocably awful mushroom.  However the western version found in CO and the Rockies known as 'Hawk Wings' is said to be very fine.  

Still, I'm glad to offer representation of a class of fungi whose spores are released through 'teeth' in contrast to gills or pores.  And it abides as an exceptionally attractive mushroom.  The unwarranted armor of the grey spines of its underbelly contrasting with the rich wood-tones scales of its back renders this Hedgehog fascinating and distinctive as it lurks beneath low growing shrubs shrouded with last year's now limp Oak leaves. 
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VirginiaKnapper
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August 15th, 2018, 7:33 pm #34

I'd love to learn how to forage for mushrooms.

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"It's about what you learn, not what you make" - Erret Callahan
"Win some, lose some, and sometimes ran out" - Kenny Roberts
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Hummingbird Point
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August 15th, 2018, 7:39 pm #35

VirginiaKnapper wrote: I'd love to learn how to forage for mushrooms.

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Me and the wife mushroom hunt that property in Amelia every weekend.  Let me know if you want to meet up.  My son is moving into the dorms (VCU) Saturday, so we'll probably be out your way Sunday.  Last weekend:


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VirginiaKnapper
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August 15th, 2018, 7:50 pm #36

Dang, that's an awesome bunch you foraged. I would love to get together, how about the 27th?

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VirginiaKnapper
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August 15th, 2018, 7:51 pm #37

Or 26th.

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Hummingbird Point
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August 16th, 2018, 9:41 pm #38

VirginiaKnapper wrote: Or 26th.

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Maybe.  I'm not planning that far out, except that I plan on being there Sept. 1 trying to plink squirrels out of the tops of the hickories.  I'll email you next week.
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VirginiaKnapper
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August 17th, 2018, 12:46 am #39

Sounds good. This weekend is the Artifact show at Saunders, so my next is free, but we'll figure something out.

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