Monday, 17 March 2008

Beware the Mushroom

I give up, I really do.

It's been feeling almost Spring-like the last few days - still cold, but dry and, best of all, steadily lengthening days. After a long, dark, miserable winter, I have refound my enthusiasm for keeping my nature journal and so have begun looking around my two and a half acres for signs of returning life.

Frogspawn in a puddle, a toad ambling past my back door late one night - nature is waking up. No wild flowers yet, so I was surprised and delighted to find a solitary mushroom-type thing on the path in front of me. Filled with this new enthusiasm, I bent down to touch it, noticed that it had broken loose of its stem and decided it woul dbe nice to bring it into the house and describe it in my nature notes.

Now as a natural townie, I have an instinctive aversion to wild fungi. I just don't see the point of risking your health by picking something that not only doesn't taste that great but which could also kill you - what's the point? So I was feeling very proud of myself as I bore it back to the house. It was a funny-looking thing - like a little brown brain - so I reckoned I'd be able to identify it without too much trouble...I did. It was the highly poisonous False Morel. Typical.

Having touched it with my bare hands, and even tentatively sniffed it, I am now expecting to die before morning...well, maybe not, but just in case I do, I wanted you, my blogging buddies, to know why I was no longer posting. I am afraid that that is an end to my fungi forays - it'll be back to the look, don't touch strategy of before.

Here's a pic so you all know what not to put in your wild mushroom omelette...

Mind you, looking at the ghastly, wrinkled little thing, I can't imagine who would want to eat it. Happy Spring everyone!

1 comment:

Selma said...

It resembles a little purple brain. Odd-looking, yet definitely one of nature's marvels.