Autumn Mushrooms, Oddities & Flowers

pink

I’m recovering… enough to enjoy wandering around the yard and the surrounding woods a bit.

fall bloomersI apologize to all whose comments on my last post I didn’t answer.  Instead of trying to play catchup, just know that I appreciate you and will do better from now on.  🙂

We are debating on whether to get the Casita’s furnace fixed this month, or to try to find some inexpensive camping before really cool weather sets in.  With the federal campgrounds closed, I found several Georgia county campgrounds with water and electric that charge under $20 per night.  The state parks are simply too expensive for us as we like to stay for several days at a time.fall bloomers2

Some of the county parks look nice, although it’s hard to find reviews on them.  Others just don’t look that appealing.   And sitting outside on chilly nights breathing campfire smoke might not be the best thing for me right now.

Maybe I’ll just get the furnace fixed and we’ll head to Florida later — IF the national forest campgrounds open up.

Interesting mushroom. Note the reticulated stalk

[This is where I edited out a biting comment on the government shutdown political shenanigans.]  😀

Our yard has mushrooms everywhere!  Some edible, some sickeners.  But after our drought last year, I am happy to see them all.  The variety is astounding.  I am only posting a small sample of the photos I took.

I was unable to get a spore print on this mushroom because it has a white parasitic fungus on the pore surface.  It doesn't seem to bother the little guy who is eating it.

I was unable to get a spore print on this mushroom because it has a white parasitic fungus on the pore surface. It doesn’t seem to bother the little guy who is eating it.

Edible penny-bun type bolete

Edible penny-bun type bolete

And another!

And another!

I removed the pore layer because it was a little past its prime.  The pores were actually olive green but they show up brown in this photo.

I removed the pore layer because it was a little past its prime. The pores were actually olive green but they show up brown in this photo.

I’m not sure what this is. At first I thought it might be wild quinine, but neither the flowers nor leaves are a match. On edit: it might be eupatorium serotinum aka boneset or late thoroughwort.

lichen

lichen

Edible suilli

Edible suilli

Poisonous pokeweed berries

Poisonous pokeweed berries

Such a pretty face

Such a pretty face

Another suillus

Another suillus

Soggy ground

Soggy ground

Goldenrod

Goldenrod

Red russulas (sickeners) growing by Casita tire.  More are growing under the Casita.

Red russulas (sickeners) growing by Casita tire. More are growing under the Casita.

Autumn Splendor in the Woods

The forest floor decorated for fall

Most of the woods in the area are carpeted with predominantly brown leaves.  But while I was out walking today I passed an area where the fallen leaves were just blazing.

Maybe people farther north are used to colors like this, but this is breathtaking for Georgia.

I had not felt very well the past couple of days.  I decided to go for a walk to see if it would help perk me up.  Seeing those incredible colors was just the medicine I needed.  My energy level soared!

Last evening I saw one of the most stunning sunsets I’ve ever seen.  The sky looked like deep, molten flame, and the reflection on the lake was so intense that it looked like an extension of the sky.  I took over 30 photos trying to capture the colors — and not one of the pictures captured a fraction of the majesty.

Nature outdoing herself!

Seeing these gorgeous leaves today made up for last night’s disappointment.

The mushroom season is winding down.  All I’ve found lately are various amanitas, (poisonous) a few small ones I didn’t bother trying to identify, and an occasional suillus (edible, but mediocre).  And one more puffball the other day.

I haven’t found any hen of the woods (maitake), chicken of the woods (sulfur shelf), oyster mushrooms or the coveted bears head (hericium).  I guess it’s the drought… or I’ve just not been looking in the right woods.  This has been the most disappointing fall for mushrooms for me.  I read on the mushroom boards that people in other areas are finding them plentiful.  Maybe I’m just losing my touch!  🙂

The half-eaten mushroom is probably a russula.

I didn’t notice it today due to the constant wind, but the two previous days while Ron and I were out walking, we have gotten occasional whiffs of the most heavenly scent.  Something is flowering, and I have no idea what would be blooming in the woods in the fall with such a sweet, evocative fragrance.  Hope we are gifted with another whiff or two before we leave here Sunday morning.

A Walk in the Woods

Ron and I meandered through the woods looking for mushrooms again this afternoon.

The woods are still wet after the rain.  But still, no oyster mushrooms, no crown tip coral and no hen of the woods, even though they have all thrived here before.

Maybe one good rain wasn’t enough to convince the mushrooms’ mycelia that the drought is really over.  🙂

I did find a couple of small white mushrooms — one deadly amanita and one I didn’t bother trying to identify.

Nevertheless, it felt so good to tromp through the woods on a crisp, windy fall day.  I felt so happy and alive when we got back home!

Deadly amanita

Unidentified

Colors of Late Autumn

late fall color

Our back yard November 14

I took this photo of my back yard a few minutes ago.    We did not have brilliant red and gold fall colors here this year.  But the stunning beauty in the infinite variety of rich browns made me gasp.  What a gift!

I am still not well, but am not feeling awful anymore.  Ron is antsy to head south, so we plan to leave tomorrow.  We’ll just drive a little way and hole up at a pretty campsite for a couple of days, then meander on down to Florida.

We will probably camp in campgrounds for a few more days until my symptoms are gone then go to Mom’s house for a few days.  I definitely don’t want to pass these germs on to my family!

My brother in law is going in for surgery Tuesday.  I do so regret that I can’t visit with him before he goes into the hospital.  I may not be able to visit him while he’s there.  I will just have to wait and see how fast I make a full recovery.

 

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