What a difference a week makes…

First there was this little chap poking up in the hedgerow…

IMAG3142Soon he was joined by these little poppets…

IMAG3172And then, just a few days later, they looked like this…

IMAG3280That’s the original chap on the right. Now joined by all those babies.

Less than a week and such a transformation.

I walk the dog in and around woodland most days, and decided last year after noticing such a lot of different fungi popping up practically every day, that this year, I’d get myself a field guide.

I’m not planning to pick any – I’ve watched far too many Midsomer Murders etc, for that, and although I’m sure the Other Half loves me, I suspect asking him to trust my mushroom identification skills would be a step too far. (When we visited the poison garden at Alnwick a couple of years ago, he was very disturbed to discover just how many species I already grow in our garden, and how much I knew about their poisonous properties…) – poor boy.

No, I don’t want to eat them, but I would really love to be able to put a name to a cap, as it were, and know more about them generally.

So please, tell me which guide do you have? What would you recommend a beginner to use?






Author: Anny

English countryside, old places, making art.

16 thoughts on “What a difference a week makes…”

  1. Hi Anny – I can’t offer any help over a Mushroom guide I’m afraid – I have only ever (to my knowledge) eaten wild mushrooms and that was in Ilfracombe Devon aged 4 and picked by myself and my dad before breakfast when camping. From reading your post I feel quite lucky to still be alive!!!

    1. I’m just too risk averse to do it, but it sounds wonderful really – I think one of these days I might try to compile a list of fictional mushroom poisoning plots – a good excuse for more whodunnits!

  2. I cna’t help with mushrooms either save to say we have what look exactly like field mushrooms growing behind our house. I mentioned them to my husband and he immediately recounted a story about a woman killing her husband with mushrooms she had picked.

    1. Yes, mine is extremely wary – and I’ve told him lots of times, there are far better ways to do away with him than with poison…

  3. Can’t help you I am afraid but when we lived in France we learned that pharmacists can identify your mushrooms/toadstools for you. Maybe they up their sales of medicines if they tell you something is edible when it is not thoug?!!

  4. Kingfisher Field Guilde to the Mushrooms and Toadstools of Britain and Europe – lovely illustrations, and particularly good for details about when and where you will find them which sometimes helps if you are in doubt about a description. Also mentions edibility for each mushroom!

  5. We have a huge white mushroom in the border next to the greenhouse. Predictably enough, the mice have been nibbling it… we’ll see what happens to them 🙂

  6. I share your wariness of picking and eating wild mushrooms. I once took an older Russian lady on a trip to a nearby forest. She found and picked 2 bags full of mushrooms. She was delighted but I was nervous that her old world IDs might not carry over in North America. She was fully confident, took them home, cooked and ate them, and was, of couse, completely fine. I was relieved and humbled by my ignorance of fungi… not that I’ve done much about that since. So, alas, I am no help when it comes to a guide.

    1. Well T’m with you: my Dad’s father was a town boy who retired to the country and often safely picked mushrooms for breakfast, my mother was a true country girl and never picked one in her life – I’m happy to admire in situ.

    1. I do love eating mushrooms, but I am far too scared to pick my own – I have just bought the Kingfisher guide which is very explicit on potential dangers. I’ll be happy to take pictures in the wild.

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