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All For The Love Of Fungi! Hosted as a
public service by
The Forager Press, LLC, Copyright CNYMS 2003
Weve gotten some rain and more is promised, so my hopes are high for the autumn. In the Adirondacks, where it has been raining and I finally saw mushrooms, the names didnt come to me as fast as they usually do. Out of practice.
I missed the Vanderkamp Foray (my favorite) because I was in California (no mushrooms). From the reports, it sounds like it was terrific. Many thanks to Roy and Pat Reehil. More than a dozen people from CNYMS and MYMS joined Roy on the trails and found the following fungi: Tricholomopsis platyphylla, Marasmius rotula, and M. albuscortias, Amanita rubescens and A. brunnescens. Also Russulas sp., Cordycep sp. possibly miltaris, Laccaria sp., Russula sp., Entoloma sp., Scleroderma citrinum, Lacarius lignyotes (Chocolate Milky), Bondarzewia berkelyi (Berkleys Polypore), Hygrophorous marginatus, H. flavescens, and another yellow Waxy cap to species. And Polyporus radicatus (Rooting polypore), Gandoderma sugae (Varnish shelf), G.applanatum (Artists conk), Trametes versicolor (turkeytail), Pycnoporous cinnabrinus (Cinnabar red polypore), Albatrellus pescopne (Goats foot). Special finds were Hydnum repandum (sweet tooth), Cantharellus xanthopus (yellow footed chantarelle), and Craterullus fallax (Black Trumpet). Wow!
Whats in Your Backyard?
It always amazes me how dry the summer can turn out after a rainy spring. The mushroom pickin was pretty slim where I was vacationing. When I got home, however, the St. Marys woods, that I walk in everyday, was like an oyster mushroom fairyland. There were at least ten trees that had fallen during the big storm four years ago that were so full of oysters that it was hard to see the bark. I havent seen such a sight in at least ten years! Bernie put out an alert to members on the web. At $5.99 per pound at Wegmans it seemed a shame to let them go to waste.
About ten people showed up, for the July Edibles workshop and enjoyed sampling and learning about other edibles in the woodlands besides fungi. Favorites were the jellies and the raspberry cheese. Thanks Nancy!
The list of mushrooms found at the foray was impressive, despite the dry weather, as follows: Tricholomopsis platyphylla, Marasmius rotula, and M. albuscortias, Pleurotus ostreatus, Amanita flavoconia, A. rubescens, R. virosa, A. fulva, A. frostiana, and A. crenellate. Also Russulas laurocerasi and rosacea, Meripilus sumstinei, Austroboletus gracilis, Tylopilus felleus, Scutellinia scutellata, and Cantharellus minor.
July 5th, 2002 from the Wall Street Journal
HALLUCINOGENIC MUSHROOMS FOUND ON COMPANY LAND; A CRIME WAVE SPROUTS
By Patricia Davis
"Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel Corp. has a mushroom problem. It has other problems, to be sure but in addition to its ordinary concerns [they] were recently alerted by the sheriff here that an unused plot of company land had become a popular source of hallucinogenic mushrooms. Dozens of men and women have been crawling on hands and knees, often cradling small brown bags, in search of the tan sprouts. About 80 have been caught so far The bumper crop of mushrooms represents a huge crime wave for a sheriffs department more accustomed to handling unleashed canines and drunken drivers. Not long ago, detective Pete Giordano, went under cover on the steel companys land Without knowing they were talking to the police, the pickers were often helpful, pointing out good patches and telling the detective whether they planned to sell the fungi or consume them. "Actually, they are not that easy to find," Mr. Giordano says of the mushrooms, the biggest of which are about the size of a 50-cent piece.
Mr. Giordano says he heard the Bethany mushroom patch gained renown, in part, because it was mentioned on a Website, along with directions to
the property. The Internet provides all kinds of mushroom information, including how to grow them on ricecakes and the importance of not leaving litter while trespassing.
Residents of Bethany began to realize something strange was happening a few years ago when they saw an unusually large number of cars with out-of-state plates driving the narrow road near the steel companys land. Bob and Charlotte Chambers owners of a general store, said they noticed a lot of people carrying brown
paper bags. And Lawrence Pyle, a retired
schoolteacher, says he spotted one stranger posing as a fisherman, carrying a rod with no line.
But while law enforcement understands how to handle such matters, most steel companies do not. ..Wheeling-Pittsburgh has consulted the West Virginia University Extension Office to discuss how to get rid of the mushrooms.
"Theres no magic bullet for mushroom control," says John Miller, of the extension office. He presented the company three options: pray a fungicide, bulldoze the property or sell it. Fungicides might raise additional health and liability concerns, and bulldozing 150 hilly acres isnt easy, but company officials say they are considering every option.
For the time being, Wheeling-Pittsburgh is looking forward to a long, hot summer, when few mushrooms grow.
About thirty brave souls fought the cold and inclimate weather to make the Annual Morel Foray a grand success at least as far as turnout was concerned. Tom and Denise Rhoads had an unfair advantage this year because they brought their dog Coco who they "claimed" was not trained to find Morels. Never the less, they found several with or without the help of Coco. Judy and Ed Karboski found a few Morels and helped identify the fiddleheads, partridgeberries, and watercress, all wild edibles that abounded in the area. Mike Hoselwerd joined us from Buffalo and had a great time, even though Morels were not among the finds in the basket which included Witchs butter, Dryads saddle, Mica caps, Turkeytails, Bleeding mycenas, Agrocybe and a large Entoloma that several hunters found. The phone calls started as soon as I got home, however, that people were finding Morels all over the place in some quantity. Judy and Ed even shared some of theirs with those who came to the meeting! Thanks!
I rarely find morels in quantity but I do find them in places I least expect them. This year one snuck up on me in my flower garden and surprised me and another was growing in the woods for a while, where I never look, that was about 15 inches tall! The stem was bigger than my wrist and the cap bigger than my fist! So there! I may only find one at a time but theyre HUGE!
A Quornucopia of Veggie Food
The June edition of Kiplingers Magazine reports as written by Catherine Siskos;
The same country that likes to bake beef kidneys into pies is trying to sell us Quorn pudding. Popular in Britain, Quorn is the brand name for a stringy, beige fungus that is turning up in U.S. supermarkets. Fermented in vats and mixed with egg white, the choleserol-free meat substitute is fashioned into cutlets, nuggets, patties and frozen entrees, such as fettuccine Alfredo and lasagna.
When sickly livestock became a concern in recent years, Europeans, less afraid of eating a fungus than catching a disease, turned to the quirky Quorn.
Unlike tofu, Quorn has a chewy, fibrous texture that, its aficionados say, makes it a dead ringer for meat. It sells for $3.79 a box in health food stores and supermarkets in the Northeast and Northwest and should be available nationwide by the end of next year.
"Its the closest thing to chicken that Ive ever tasted," says Marty Traynor Spencer, editor of Natural Foods Merchandiser, an industry magazine. "I wouldnt advertise what its made from, but if people taste it, theyll definitely buy it." Right.
The Excitement of Finding Your First Morels! This email was sent to Bernie and Jean on May 16th:
Bernie & Jean
May Mystery Mushroom - Can you help Identify it?:
From: Nancy Kaiser
Jean's reply, Friday, May 31, 2002
Can anyone help?
The wild leeks are up in the woods so Ive been poking around under fallen branches looking for Sarcoscypha coccinea, the Scarlet cup, but to no avail as yet. The Trout lilies are also up which, although they are mottled (like a trout) and nothing like the bright green of the ramps (wild leeks), could lead to poisoning if you are collecting ramps for food and are not positive of your ID.
As to the results in the big debate over the Coprinus species, the latest update is that, with the exception of C. comatus and two others, the remaining former Coprinus species have now been distributed into Coprinopsis, Coprinellus and Parasola, within the Psathyrellaceae. Aint science grand! Once you learn how to pronounce the Latin name, they change it. At least they left the Shaggy Mane as Coprinus comatus and it is still edible.
We had a great turnout at the Sterling Nature Center. It was way too windy to go out looking for mushrooms without being weighed down with rocks, but those who showed up from our club added their personal experience to the talk, which convinced several of the Sterling audience to join the club. Speaking of joining the club, we extend our warmest welcome to members of the Mid York Mycology Society who will be joining us on some of our forays this year. The more Mushroom Maniacs, the better! We have so much to learn from each other.
Jean O. Fahey-Editor
For The Love Of Fungi!Hosted as a public service of The Forager Press and Roy Reehil
Copyright CNYMS 2003