Monday, August 25, 2014

Late August

White Coral Jelly Fungus are emerging everywhere! I don't remember ever seeing this species before, but this year our woods seem to be producing a bumper crop.

The photo below shows the mushroom's color much more realistically then in the previous post (better lighting).
Tremella reticulata
 Lobster mushrooms result from one fungus "infecting" another causing it to become bright orange and grow in unusual shapes.
Lobster Mushroom
Our wet, cool summer seems to be favoring hop growth. The hop flowers are the largest I have ever seen, at least 1.25 inches in length.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Lots of rain leads to lots of mushrooms

Our summer started off wet and cool and seems like it might end that way as well. But, with lots of wet weather comes an increase in the number of fungus that can be spotted in yards, along trails and growing on trees. Some of my favorites from this summer:
Tremella reticulata
I picked these today while out running as I did not have a camera along and really wanted to know what they were. The larger of the two specimens is about three inches around and was growing on the root (or adjacent to) of a birch. The other specimen is made up of two branches each a couple of inches long and was found near a different species of hardwood. They were all over the place alongside the Superior Hiking Trail off of Beck's Rd.
Tremella reticulata or White Coral Jelly Fungus
Seen on hikes earlier this summer:

Sac Fungi

Phyllotus porrigens - Angel's Wings (?)

Underside of Angel's Wings

Itsy bitsy sac fungi found in the soils adjacent to Mission Creek.
The fungus pictured above and below was growing in one of the slumped areas along Mission Creek. This was one of the hardest hit areas in the 2012 flood. I found these along the area that was rehabbed to become part of the Eugene Curnow Trail Marathon and Minnesota Voyageur Trail Ultra course in the Fond du Lac neighborhood.
Smaller then the tip of my finger, that's a pine needle in upper right corner. 

As you may be able to guess I am rather fascinated with tiny mushrooms. The two above were found growing in a bed of moss.

 The group below are such a great red color.

I found these growing next to the lilac in my front yard while doing some yard work.
Xylaria sp?, possibly Xylaria polymorphs or Dead Man's Fingers (Sac fungi)

Sunday, August 17, 2014

A Walk Along 210

I volunteered at the Voyageur's Revenge mountain bike race today. The temperatures dropped steadily throughout the day, making it a cold day for spectating, but great for the racers. I was posted about 1.5 miles up Hwy 210 where racers left the trail on the south side of 210, rode for a short time on the pavement, and then crossed back into the trails on the north side. 

After the various races were over I opted to walk back down the highway and took a few photos along the way:
Blue Vervain (Verbena hastata)

Close up of the flower.

Including flower spikes and leaves.

Coreopsis species (C. lanceolata?)

Coreopsis species (C. Lanceolata?)
By the time the races were over the temperature had dropped into the mid 50's. Cold enough to cause the bees to be a lot easier to photograph then normal.

Cold bee on thistle

The new Mission Creek mountain bike trails look like a lot of fun to ride and I anticipate heading out there soon for a little two wheeled exploring.