Wild mushrooms with fallen leaves

Magic Carpet (click to enlarge )

Thousands of mushrooms are popping up all over our property, in what’s turning out to be one of the best wild mushroom seasons in a long time.  As a result, my walks lately have been more of a slow amble – but still, they do involve some exercise.

Most of the individual mushrooms are small, so to get a good look – and especially to photograph them – requires a form of calisthenics that’s not normally part of my daily routine: deep knee bends. Dozens and dozens of them!

I have no expertise in wild mushroom ID, so I don’t know if any of the fungi I’m seeing are edible. Nor do I know – or care to find out – if any might be hallucinogenic. I’m content to admire them and to try to capture their beauty in images.

It seems that almost every day our mushroom map changes, as some disappear and others pop up where there was no sign of any the previous day. All of the mushrooms in these three photos were found around our pond, but they could be gone by the time I get this posted. Ephemeral beauty at its best!

Our fall fungi are by no means colourful or flashy, but I love their graceful lines and subtle hues. And if, in the process of photographing them, I happen to shed a few pounds, I’ll consider them magic mushrooms.

Click to enlarge:

A reminder if you are going to be on Gabriola Island:

My photography show, Reflections on the Coast, continues until Nov. 30 – I hope you’ll get an opportunity to catch it.

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About Laurie MacBride, Eye on Environment

Photographer and writer focusing on nature and the environment

7 responses »

  1. dianeschuller.com says:

    I dont know how to identify mushrooms and even with a little book, there are so many small differences that I wont take a chance. My husband insisted (about 15-20 yrs ago) that he KNEW one type was edible “for sure”. So I reluctantly cleaned and cooked them. I took two small bites (good thing I was reluctant) and immediately got a reaction! My face went numb, my ears began to ring, and my fingers tingled all the way up my arms — from 2 bites! Never again.

    • I’m glad you survived that experiment – and I’m with you on this, Diane. The only kind I would try is Shaggy Manes, which I have safely eaten before. But I haven’t found any on our property.

      There’s a second reason I’m reluctant to try any. Mushrooms are known to absorb radiation out of the environment, and with the considerable amount of radiation we’ve had here on the west coast from Fukishima, I worry that local wild mushrooms might not be safe to eat anymore. This is something I’m trying to learn more about and in the meantime, we’re only eating mushrooms that were grown commercially, i.e. indoors.

  2. Hi Laurie, thanks for the comments on my blog….I have added you to my dashboard reading list so I can follow your blog. Will check I have followed you on twitter etc. as well. really like the mushroom photo and like your blog. cheers, nora

  3. Robin says:

    These are beautiful, Laurie. We have mushrooms popping up all over here now, too. Like you, I don’t know enough about them to ID them so I just spend my time admiring them, and photographing them, instead. 🙂

  4. Sherry Galey says:

    These do have beautiful lines and hues and are lovely to look at. I know precious little about fungi but have always appreciated their particular beauty. Love how you focus your lens on the little things in the natural world around you. Love your sense of humour too!

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