Tuesday, September 12, 2006

A passel of mushrooms

I see quite a few mushrooms on the 1 mile dog walk. With all the rain we've had this is a good time to find them.

Here are some of the pictures I've taken on the walks and around the yard. The big ugly mass appeared on the woodchips we got at the community environmental center. We got the woodchips to spread in all the planting beds to keep the weeds in check. According to the guy on "you bet your garden" show on the radio we did a bad thing as the decaying woodchips actually take up nitrogen from the soil and make it unavailable to the plants. He also mentioned that all kinds of fungus grows on the woodchips and that you shouldn't put it next to your house or car-which we did-because there's a fungus called the artillery fungus which shoot spores all over your house/car leaving a mottled mess that's almost impossible to clean.

This is the first time I'm posting so many photos at once so we'll see how blogger manages this. As usual click on image to enlarge.


Blogger La Gringa said...

Hi Ki, Thanks for visiting my Honduras blog!

I use woodchips all the time and I don't believe what they say. If you mix them into the soil, they may tie up nitrogen. On top of the soil, they merely rot and add nitrogen to the soil just like anything else.

If they do have an effect on the soil, I don't think it is more than the top fraction of an inch. I have seen no ill effects in almost two years of using a wood chip/sawdust mixture. I'm happy to say so, as this is the only type of mulch that is available to me here in La Ceiba.

10:14 AM  
Blogger Ki said...

la gringa, thanks for the info I was afraid that our plants would all turn yellow from lack of nitrogen but it hasn't happened yet so I believe your experience is more the norm. I wonder where these urban ledgends come from? It seems so plausible on the first look but experience does not bear it out!
There's a lot of misadvice out there like microwaving plastic containers releasing pcbs and causing breast cancer. What a hoax.

Cool that you live in Hounduras and are able to grow so many tropical plants. I miss not able to grow mangoes, lichee, ginger, papayas, avocadoes etc.

Thanks for writing.

4:24 AM  
Blogger La Gringa said...

Ki, Thanks for linking to my blog.

I forgot to say that you have some collection of fungus there! I've seen quite a few different types of mushrooms in my garden but I've also read about people dying from eating wild mushrooms so I don't take any chances.

10:03 AM  
Blogger Ki said...

We went out twice on mushroom gathering with the local mycological society. They showed us easily identifiable mushroom to eat but the three that we found and were deemed edible were less than delicious.

Other than that I don't eat wild mushrooms although I'm tempted to try some puffballs as all varieties are supposed to be edible. Of course if I find a morel it would definitely end up in the frying pan as I think these are the most delicious mushroom I have eaten.

7:05 AM  
Blogger Central FLA Gardener said...

Greetings from Gardening in Central Florida! Those R. maxima that you note in the top post have really caught on down here, and suddenly. I'd never seen them before this summer, and now they're everywhere. Beautiful plants, and what a statement!

I wonder when someone is going to start marketing mushrooms as bedding plants? Some of them are really quite beautiful, and tehy're easy to grow! Don't laugh -- if someone had taken it into his head to choose to put moss in his garden ten years ago, people would have laughed. Now there are nurseries that specialize in the stuff!

Oh, and totally ignore the nonsense about mulch robbing plants of N. If you're really worried about it, add an extra handful of Milorganite or a spray of fish emulsion. In the long run, once the microbes have done their job, the N that the mulch "stole" from your plants will be returned ten-fold by the breakdown of the mineral-rich chips.

5:44 AM  
Blogger Ki said...

Hi me, myself and I,
Thanks for the info about the nitrogen/woodchips.

Mushrooms grow everywhere here and this is one of the best times of the year to see many different varieties. I've spotted at least 10 varieties just on the dog walk.

The R. maximas are really a great specimen flower. Definitely bold and unusual. Glad to hear they've caught on in Florida. Thanks for the comments.

5:53 PM  

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