There's nothing better than a good snuffle through the leaves as you just never know what you might stumble across. I'm definitely not an expert when it comes to identifying fungi but I quite like to take photos then have a go (or a guess) at trying to figure out what they are later. Some of the names are just great! So, if you're reading this and think I've got their id wrong, please comment below as I'm more than happy to be corrected!
I wasn't disappointed as lots of lovely fungi had popped up after all the rain we've had. This small staghorn had burst out through the bark on a fallen tree. It looked like it was poking its way out of any available gap in the bark, with little yellow fingers pointing up into the air. It reminded me of a toy the kids used to have, where you put playdoh into a tube then squeeze it out of the top through little holes, making playdoh worms or hair.
These lovely little fungi are called saffrondrop bonnets and are found in chalk hills, especially under beech trees, so are very at home in the Chilterns. Their stems are full of saffron coloured liquid that you can squeeze out of the stem and write with. You quite often see a splodge of saffron on the cap of the fungi where the stem has overfilled and leaked out onto the cap.
Rosy bonnets are such delicate fungi, baby pink and really pretty. Beware though as they're poisonous! These are some of the first I've seen this year, but there are usually lots of them around when the fungi season really gets going.
|Charcoal burner from underneath|
There are other signs that Autumn has arrived. The leaves are starting to fall and it won't be long until the beech trees are fabulous shades of orange, yellow and red. Also the mosses, that seem to dry up and get lost in all the other foliage during the summer, have woken up and are starting to flourish again.
|Common tamarisk moss|