November Submissions: Mushrooms

Hello Nature-Led Friends!

I hope you’re all doing your best to stay healthy. I know this time of year gets busy for all of us but remember to get plenty of water, vitamin C, fresh air and sleep! Maybe a bit of Mushroom broth to help keep you warm and sated. Mushrooms are and excellent source of vitamin D. However, none of the following mushrooms should be eaten. I admire mushrooms for their beauty, diversity and place within the ecosystem but my classification skills of them is terrible. Please enjoy the following photo submission for entertainment purposes.

Let’s start our journey by passing through the mushroom gate.

Mushroom Sculptures, Durham Botanic Garden, Durham England By Leslie Dawson

This makes me think of the Torii gates of Japan that symbolically mark the transition between the rest of the world and the sacred.

Fly Agaric (Amanita muscaria)

The most popular and photogenic mushroom of the group goes to the Fly Agaric (Amanita muscaria). This mushroom is commonly found in the northern hemisphere and popular in illustrations and folklore of Western Europe. The mushroom is poisonous and does have some psychoactive properties. Druids of ancient Europe may have used it for its hallucinogenic properties and provided it to warriors prior to battle to reduce their stimulus to fear, but none of us are ancient Druids, so leave it on the ground for the fairy folk!

Fly Agaric Toadstools, Durham Egland by Leslie Dawson. Blog: https://moment-by-moment.blog/

Durham England By Leslie Dawson
Blickling England By IDV. Blog: https://inexplicabledevice.blogspot.com/

Redmond WA USA By Patricia Lezama. Blog: https://patlezama.com/

Conks (aka Shelf Fungi or Bracket Fungi)

Found throughout the world growing on tree trunks and limbs, stumps, fallen logs, and sometime structural lumber.

Mushrooms growing on a weeping mango stump, Uganda, Africa By Jude Itakali Blog: https://judeitakali.wordpress.com/

Conks on a stump, Riverside Park, New York, NY, US By Kerfe
Riverside Park, New York, NY US By Kerfe. Blog https://methodtwomadness.wordpress.com/

Artist’s Conk (Ganoderma applanatum), Devon, England By Ms Scarlet. Blog: https://wonky-words.com/

Unknown Conk in Doylestown, PA US By Mistress Maddie. Blog: http://mistressmaddie.blogspot.com/

Unknown Mushrooms

Mushroom Series, South Florida, US By Lisa Troute

Same kind of mushroom?

Unknown Mushroom in Blickling, UK By IDV Blog: https://inexplicabledevice.blogspot.com/

Ms Scarlet’s “Boring Mushroom” Devon, England. Blog: https://wonky-words.com/

Looks like someone took a nibble out of this one. The squirrels in my yard will occasionally eat mushrooms.

Unknown Mushrooms, Colorado US By Tracy Abell. Blog: https://tracyabell.com/

Who dropped these cream puffs among the lupine and clover?

Unknown mushroom, South Florida By Lisa Troute.

These look a lot like Oyster Mushrooms, but I’ve always known oyster mushrooms to be growing on logs and this looks to be growing up through the ground, what looks like sandy soil.

Small Mushrooms on a log By Leslie Dawson. Blog: https://moment-by-moment.blog/

In my first relationship when I was young, I would go mushroom hunting with my boyfriend’s mom. We would go up into the mountains around familiar burns scars from 2-4 years passed where plentiful Oyster, Chanterelles and Shaggy Mane. We often ate them breaded and fried.


Also, I must share this delightful book. What a great cover picture! The thought of it alone makes me smile. The contents of the book are excellent as well if you happen to find yourself with an interest in mushroom identification and hunting throughout the US and Canda.


My dear friend Patricia Lezam closes this post with heartfelt musings on the topic at hand.

Redmond WA USA By Patricia Lezama. Blog: https://patlezama.com/

MUCH-rooms

These two mushrooms look alike. Probably one is older than the other. One little, one big. One thicker, one brighter. Similar species, they seem the same by the eye of a two-leg walker who is staring at them and standing still wishing she is one of them.

Last time she saw herself in the mirror she could not find her curves like the ones in the magazines. She felt sad and irregular, out of that world and its shape. 

During her empty lifespan she kept wondering how to fit in, she struggled all her spores out until today.

She realized that she didn’t need a mirror. She just needed a walk, to find her reflection in these two mushrooms.

She felt complete in one stem and a big head full of ideas, creativity, fairy tales. A head to save her from bad weather, a head as an antenna to receive the energy of the universe and communicate with it.

She read once that mushrooms don’t have roots, but mycorrhizal associations. The mycelium’s role is to collect nutrients and water and keep the mushroom anchored to the earth. So she wished. She wished there was a root system underneath her humanity, in which everybody is unique but interdependent, knowing that we need each other.  Knowing that we are all connected to each other in order to be, whether we see it or not, feel it or not. 

Sometimes she believed that she did not need anything or anyone. A lone walker with nobody to bother and nobody bothering her. Then she understood, she knew that every little or big thing she does affects her surroundings, our roots, so she started to bother, then, it became a wishful longing, where her kin were like these mushrooms, rooted for eachother even without seeing, even without feeling it, just being. If we were like them, we would  be a magnificent forest, diverse in colors, shapes, heights, breathing this same air that brings oxygen no matter body shapes or ranks, because in the mushroom life, there is no hierarchy.

So much room in this world for all of us, so much room in the head of these two mushrooms, and in her, and myself, and you. So much to give and love and live in awe and wonder.

Patricia Lezama.

Little Mushroom Trail By Melanie Reynolds

This concludes our Mushroom tour. I hope you enjoyed it! As always, my love and gratitude to those of you that participated by providing pictures. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

New Photo Submissions Request: Oct, Nov, Dec

Hello wonderful Nature-Led friends. Some of you have asked to do more and I also love the variety of submissions we get!

Rhubarb Leaf of Culinary Rhubarb plant (R. x hybridum), Washington State, USA Fall 2022, By Melanie Reynolds

October : Leaves

We have entered into the season of Fall for the northern hemisphere and the middle of Spring for the southern hemisphere. Find us a leaf or leaves that capture your imagination!

Photo Submissions Due: October 31

Pictures will be posted on November 1st.

Lewis’ Mock Orange (Philadelphus lewisii) leaf in October. Washington State, USA Fall 2022 By Melanie Reynolds

I like the way the tinge of green at the lower edge makes it look as if the chlorophyll has drained out of the leaf.


November: Fungi/Mushrooms

Such a fascinating family of organisms we know so little about.

Earthstar mushrooms (Geastrum saccatum) Washington State, USA 2021 By Melanie Reynolds

Photo Submissions Due: November 30th

Pictures will be posted on December 1st.

Unknown Fungi on a rotting stump. Washington State, USA 2022 By Melanie Reynolds


December: Nature at rest

Our most ambiguous photo submission request to date. I live in the Northern hemisphere, so I often think of nature as being at rest or slowed down during the months of December through February, but this is also the beginning of Summer for the Sothern Hemisphere, so maybe not such a restful time there?

Still, I can think of no better nature topic for December and I’m curious to see what you can come up with for such a vague photo prompt. The only parameters are that the picture be taken outside and that a human is not the focal point.

Sleeping Wolf at the Cougar Mountain Zoo, Issaquah, WA, USA By Melanie Reynolds

Photo Submissions Due: December 31st

Pictures will be posted on January 1st.

Pine Siskins resting on a dormant Hardy Hibiscus ‘Aphrodite’, Woodinville, WA, USA By Melanie Reynolds


Photo Submission – Please Read

Email to: natureledlife@gmail.com

Subject line: Photo Submission for [month] (Multiple months of photos in one email is fine.)

Image: Attached as a .JPEG or .PNG file

Captions for each picture:

Subject in the photo, State/Providence & Country, Date (optional). Your name as you want it to appear, Your blog link (if you have one)

(This will save me so much time and reduce errors if I can copy and paste the photo details and not hunt for blog links, preferred names, etc.)

Feel free to add any interesting notes about a picture. I love stories and learning! Let me know if it’s just a story for ‘my eyes only’ or if I can share any part of it along with the photo.

Thank you!


Have a wonderful week and make time for being outside!

Nature-led Community Photos: A Tree

My sincerest gratitude to those of you who participated in our latest photo submission, A Tree. If you participated in both this photo submission and last month’s submission, Unknown Path, then you have double my gratitude! Please partake of your favorite hot or cold beverage and bask in the glow of my love and gratitude! I hope you can feel it!

A “Beach Tree” on the English coast By Inexplicable Device, https://inexplicabledevice.blogspot.com/

We start our tree tour with this lovely “Beach Tree” interpretation shared with us by Inexplicable Device after he’d switched back from Selkie form.

Not knowing whether I was going to be a stickler for pictures of literal trees only, he also provided us with this dizzying gaze up into some kind of old pine tree. The image reminds me that some tree species can develop such thick lateral branches as to develop their own microecosystems on a single branch! I read about this phenomenon years ago in a National Geographic magazine. I will do further research in an effort to provide a proper post about it, because I think it is a fascinating topic.

A Pine Tree in Norfolk, England, UK By Inexplicable Device, https://inexplicabledevice.blogspot.com/


Aspen Trees North Shore MN USA By Kelli Fika


Banyan Tree, Norton Museum, West Palm Beach, FL, USA Mary Reynolds


Magnolia tree Southern Pines NC By Cathy Litchfield, https://Grounded-Wisdom.com


Sweet Chestnut Castanea sativa, Castle Ward (a National Trust property), County Down, Northern Ireland By Ashley, https://8-arrows.com


Sycamore Tree, New York, NY, USA By Kerfe Roig, methodtwomadness

Bark close-up


Christmas Bush or Pohutukawa (Maori name) or Metrosideros kermadecensis somewhere in New Zeland By Dinah, https://moreidlethoughts.wordpress.com/

Java cassia (aka pink shower, apple blossom) tree Cassia javanica, somewhere in Australia, By Dinah, https://moreidlethoughts.wordpress.com/


North Devon England, UK, Spring 2022 By Ms Scarlet, https://wonky-words.com/blog/


Longwood Gardens, Kenneth Sqaure, PA,USA By Mistress Maddie, http://mistressmaddie.blogspot.com/

Added @ 8:30pm PST – New Addition – My apologies to Lisa. I forgot this was still in my other email box!

Baobab  tree, Botswana, Africa, August 2019.  Photo by Lisa Troute, Jupiter, FL


This concludes our photo journey of trees for the September photo submissions.

Should we do more Monthly Photo Submission prompts?

(*Please let me know if I’ve accidently missed a submission or need to make a correction.)

Exercise: A study in patience

I’m going to pick a tree and take a picture of it during each season. If I take the first picture this week for Fall, by this time next year I’ll have a seasonal progression of the tree. If you like this idea, feel free to do it as well. You can share your tree’s seasonal progression here or post it on your own blog and send me an email, so I know to look for it and reblog.


Thank you for stopping by and being part of the Nature-led community!