Nature Friday ~ July 9, 2021

Nature FridayHappy Fri-Yay! and welcome to this week’s edition of Nature Friday where we join our ‘anipal fur-iends,’ Rosy, Sunny, Arty and Jakey from LLB in Our Backyard. Make sure you check out what others have shared by clicking on the highlighted link.

It’s been very hot in the 303 (the heat dome from the PNW has now moved eastward) but one day earlier this week a real gully washer of a rainstorm that moved quickly through the neighborhood was enjoyed. It cooled things off nicely for the evening, cleansed the air and hydrated all the parched trees and flowers nicely and I knew exactly what would sprout from it a couple of days later. Weeds…but that’s another story. What sprouted were mushrooms!

Mushrooms

Most of the time we get the little dome topped ‘shrooms known as Coprinopsis atramentaria (common name, Alcohol Inky or Coprinus comatus (Shaggy Mane, both images below courtesy of Coloradomushrooms.com) but these guys caught my eye in a yard we walked past this morning where the rain had definitely helped the weeds.

Mushrooms

Mushrooms

So why did they spring up practically overnight? Mushrooms are fungi or at least the reproductive part of fungi, that live in the soil. Most of the time, fungi just stays hidden, working quietly as it breaks down organic material. But when conditions are right, they burst forth, like desert flowers blooming after a rain spreading spores into the air and disappear once the sun comes out or the soil dries up. And trust me, it’s been dry. And hot.

Mushrooms

Mushrooms are a good thing for the garden though I know most people don’t appreciate them in their lawns. Most fungi that sprout up in the lawn is not toxic but just the same, it is still probably best to not let your pet to nosh on any. Since Norman and Elsa only encounter mushrooms while on their walks, I feel confident they won’t, considering there are far more interesting things that will capture their interest (like the bunnies that have been seen a few times this week and of course, tree rats). They’d always prefer a moving target over any weird looking mushroom to check out.

Fungi decompose lignin based organic matter which is found in woody material like tree roots, stumps, tree leaves, or decaying mulch, twigs, etc.

The benefit of having a fungi rich soil is they help break down the  harder to digest tree leaves or stems that can often build up in a thatch layer in the grass. Fungi produce a strong enzyme that is able to break down woody material which is why you’ll find mushrooms near decaying organic matter such as stumps.

While I’m certainly no mycophile, I’ve always wondered why I’d see mushrooms under a drip line or near a tree stump.

The beauty of fungi is that they help plants survive conditions of stress; i.e. low fertility, drought, temperature extremes, and root pathogens. Ain’t Nature grand in the overall scheme of things?

So the bottom line is when you see mushrooms in your lawn/garden, it’s more than likely a very good thing while breaking down organic material.  Do you have ‘shrooms in your garden or just in your dinner salad or on top of a slice of pizza?

We hope you have a terrific weekend. Whatever you do, we hope you enjoy getting outdoors and looking at all the interesting sights Mother Nature provides.
Live, love, bark! 🐾

59 thoughts on “Nature Friday ~ July 9, 2021

    1. I do enjoy a ‘shroom now and then but too nervous about relying on my knowledge. I’ll check this out. Thank you for the link. 😊

      1. I look forward to the wild chanterelles sold at the Corvallis and Albany farmers’ markets every autumn. They are very good with salmon! 🙂

        1. I took a gander at the link you provided (thanks again)…amazing info and other reference links. Talk about going down a rabbit hole! LOL

  1. We have various kinds of mushrooms popping up all over the yard…I grab them to dispose of elsewhere, cause I fear one of my pups might try a taste test…with unwelcome consequences.

    II have a whole series of various mushrooms…stashed away in a closet…I gave them all to my Aunt, and then re-inherited them when she passed. They are all embroidered and framed to hang up. And I have one painting of them given to me by my parents…its old, they bought it when they lived in the West Indies, but its defo not a tropical scene, LOL! Somewhere i have a couple of agate stones cut into mushroom shapes and a toadstool of some other media. D’ya think I admire mushrooms?? LOL! I also have a book to try and identify the ones growing in our yard…but since sometimes iits very hard to determine the good ones from the bad, I treat em all as potentially bad…I only eat store bought…and the occasional puff ball that might grace or yard. They are fun to dehydrate and then put o pizza or other cooking in the winter…gives a nice earthy touch!
    Whoot, I am wordy on WordPress…LOL!

    1. I’m too much of a chicken to eat any mushroom other than what I buy at the grocery or what might be served with a meal. Luckily there are never any mushrooms in the dog run and neither pup has ever indicated any interest. Whew! Elsa prefers wool socks or eyeglasses to much on 🤣

        1. Elsa has munched at least four pairs of reading glasses (as well as assorted socks, blankets, toys, plants…oh the list goes on and on). Don’t know what her fascination is with glasses but now they are kept safely away from poodle jaws. 😇

  2. I never knew the reason mushrooms pop up in the grass, thanks for sharing that! I’ve just always assumed they were poisonous to avoid a potential disaster with a dog who will eat ANYTHING…

  3. Mee-yow wow efurrythin iss comin up Mushroomss innstead of Rosess there Miss Monika!!! Purrty kewl rite???
    Pleese give mee Sweet Norman mee reegardss! An a mee-yow out to lovelee Elsa two!
    **purrss** BellaDharma an ((huggiess)) LadyMew

    1. Your sweet regards were delivered to the Ranch hands and well received. Hugs and tail wags in return.

    1. Typically that’s the case but we got a real nice shower the other day so I’m guessing (hoping) that was the trigger.

  4. I think mushrooms are cool – especially the ones with odd-shaped caps. I also like them on pizza. On the other hand…..

    Keeping Bogie from eating mushrooms, grass, weed flowers, dirt, birdseed, bugs, and other assorted yard trash is nearly impossible. Trust me, I’ve tried. Just like I used to with Ducky. He has his bouts of soft poop, just like Ducky did. Surprisingly enough, he hasn’t had any other issues tho. I guess the probiotic I give him in the morning is doing its job. 🤔😊 Maybe I need to increase the probiotic from a third of a chew to half of one.

    He also loves running the fence line – like Ducky – with our neighbors’ dogs. And having wrestling matches with Ducky. Or, just laying on the floor of the carport, watching the day go by. He would love playing with Elsa and Norman as well.

    1. Those pups who are so active on the chew-part of growing up sure keep you hoping, don’t they? But he’s adorably cute and definitely worth it. Hopefully he’ll grow out of that stage soon. 🤞🏼

  5. Lulu: “We see mushrooms in our yard from time to time, but not as many as Mama and Dada once had growing in the carpet of an apartment with a leaky bathroom that they shared with friends back in college!”

  6. I love the inifinite variety of mushrooms – they are fascinating. We generally see them after rainy periods and some are HUGE while others are so tiny you can barely see them. I remember thinking they would make wonderful umbrellas for my dolls when I used to play in the woods behind our house as a child. LOL

    Hugs, Pam

    1. They remind me of something from the Lord of the Rings-a perfect accessory for fairies or dollies.

    1. They are busy working on the tree root, breaking it down one micro bit at a time. Happy mid-summer to you and Kosmo.

    1. I’ve been asking that same question for years. Welcome back, Marco.

  7. Mycophile, LOL? You got me on that one. Now that I’ve consulted Mr. Google, I see it is someone who is an expert on mushrooms. So, did you know that dogs should only eat cooked mushrooms? I learned this only a few months ago. Glad all those raw munchrooms didn’t hurt my pups!

    1. Yikes, I did not know they should only eat cooked ‘shrooms! I’ve been giving the pups mushrooms for several months. See, I wasn’t exaggerating when I said I am not a mycophile!

        1. I’ve been reading more and more how-to stories. You don’t think adding something as healthful as veggies had such caveats. At least I didn’t!

  8. I was waiting the obligatory mushroom joke but it never arrived. You know, “I took one of the mushrooms home with me. Cause he was fungi.” Sigh. The weekend calls…

        1. Anything with great texture just beckons me as well. Trees, mushrooms, the velvety look of a petal. Nature gifts us so many incredible sights!

          1. Could not agree more. Nature and even things. I’ve been tempted to use a picture I took of a rusty pole for WW – it’s kinda cool…

  9. Nature works together to make a better world for them. Now is we could get people to do the same.

    Have a fabulous day and weekend. Scritches all around, a smooch to Norman and a big hug to you. ♥

    1. Nature knows what to do. It’s man who comes in and messes the balance of nature. Sigh. Try to stay cool this weekend. Hugs and tail wags to you.

  10. We always have these popping up after rain, but I never knew all those facts about them! I usually clean out any in Luke’s yard (with the pooper scooper rake and shovel!). I do it just to be on the safe side, I’ve never seen him show interest in any.

    1. Those scooper tools are so versatile, aren’t they?! Neither of the Ranch hands seem interested in mushrooms either (outside their dinner bowls). You’d think the dampness might entice them but as of yet, nothing like that. Thank goodness, too!

  11. We had some oyster mushrooms growing on a coconut stump this year…delicious! Others come up where we are using sheep manure but as they have white gills I am reckoning on them not being advisable.
    We had all sorts when in France…but we were warned that the shaggy ink caps were only to be eaten at breakfast time as if eaten in combination with booze they were toxic.
    The local muchroom societies used to have huge displays every autumn…the trouble was, you would see an example marked with a skull and crossbones and be convinced that it was one you had both picked and eaten! Nervewracking!

    1. The lore about mushrooms is fascinating but I’d never pick and eat anything in the wild. I’m just not that
      much of a daredevil! In Germany “Pilz” are a delicacy and served up in so many creative ways which I always enjoyed. But the idea of picking them, umm, no thank you. I’m not that smart to know (or remember) what is safe and what is not. I’ll leave that to the experts!

    1. Moving targets are far more interesting! I just have to remember to hang on to my hat! 😂

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