Sunday, 10 October 2010

The Fruits of Autumn?



This year, here is North Yorkshire, the fruits have Atumn have been plentiful. There are heavy crops of hawthorn berries awaiting the arrival of the fieldfares and redwings; the elderberries are looking particularly luscious; conkers lie thick on the ground under the horse chestnut trees (don't children play 'conkers' any more?); rose hips are already very bright red and stand out like sentinels in the hedgerow.
And fungi! They are everywhere. Yesterday there was a huge patch on our side lawn. I had thought to photograph them this morning but on going out all that remains is a patch of brown/black goo.

But a couple of days ago some friends and I walked round our bottom meadows and in one corner, near to where the beck flows through, some of the grass blades were covered with a brightish yellow spongy froth. Needless to say I had forgotten to carry my camera (always carry a camera - you never know what you might come across).
Yesterday the farmer and I walked over to the spot to photograph it - the yellowness had gone and the spongy quality had hardened - but the fungus (for that is what I assume it is) was still there. Nearby were some almost transparent little 'mushrooms' so I photographed one of those as well.

I have asked Stuart Dunlop (Donegal Wildlife on my side bar) if he know what it is. In the meantime if any of you readers out there know what it is, please let us know in the comment box. The farmer can't remember ever seeing it on the grass before.

Have a nice Sunday.

2.20pm. As I predicted, Stuart Dunlop of Donegal Wildlife has correctly identified the 'fungus'. I am not sure you will want to know that it is commonly called 'Dog Vomit Slime Mould'! Ha! says the farmer - there is a heap of it at the back of the garage and there was me thinking the dog had been sick. (Sorry about that). Its proper name is myxomycetes and it was thought to be fungus but recent research has suggested that it moves around in a manner similar to amoeba (remember doing amoeba in biology at school?) It reacts strongly to light. Thank you for the help Stuart.
We learn something new every day in blogland.

18 comments:

mrsnesbitt said...

Fungus - yes - we had a fairy ring in the garden....looked lovely but we know better!

Heather said...

That frothy patch is a mystery to me Pat - I have never seen anything like it. We passed a lovely group of fungi on the roadside the other day but couldn't stop as the road was narrow and there was traffic behind us. I wonder if all the berries and nuts mean we will have another hard winter.

Peter Goulding said...

I saw that frothy stuff on Dr Who. Don't go near it...

Jenn Jilks said...

We have tons of mushrooms, too. Very lovely little surprise buried in the grasses!

steven said...

weaver i was on a day-long walk recently and noticed lots of mushrooms and fungi but nothing quite as frothy as that! it looks like the remains of a candyfloss! have a lovely day in the dale. steven

Pondside said...

We've had rain for the better part of a week, and I'll bet I'll find lots of fungi in the grass - but none of the horribly-named slime. That's new to me!

angryparsnip said...

I am not sure if I have said recently how much I enjoy reading your blog !

"Dog Vomit Slime Mold" indeed !

You made my Sunday morning.
cheers, parsnip

Gerry Snape said...

that is sooo interesting! imagine it moving around! We have so many fungi this year that I have had to make sure that the little ones don't pick them as I don't know what they are even though I look in my mushroom book I can't seem to distinguish one from another.

MorningAJ said...

Slime moulds are fascinating! Fancy having one growing on your land.

Titus said...

I knew that one! We get heaps of it! I used to think it was a huge slice of decayed/wet bread or fat a crow or something had dropped whilst flying over, but did my research.

And we're fungi-full here too. I love to see them back.

Mistlethrush said...

After last year's frugal berry harvest, the birds are going to have a feast this year.

Crafty Green Poet said...

now that's a new fungus for me! What a name!

Lots of conkers on the ground here, apparently thwy're not of the necessary quality to play conkers, but also there's all the health and safety fuss over playing conkers these days, which might put people off, plus the fact that so many kids aren't allowed out unsupervised these days and those that are probably think conkers too tame an activity

Dave King said...

Actually, I'm glad I know that. As a name, Dog Vomit Slime Mould appeals to me no end. I have made a mental note. I'm sure it will come in handy. Good post.

Poet in Residence said...

I never eat mushrooms unless I've picked them myself ;)

jeanette from everton terrace said...

I swear, things like this just remind me what a strange and wonderful world this is.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Ha! Knew you would all love that poetic name!!! As Dave says - you never know when a phrase like that may come in useful.
Thanks for the comments.

find said...

Autumn fruits are plentiful. There is abundant harvests of hawthorn berries until the arrival of redwings and thrushes elderberries are looking particularly tasty Conker are thick on the ground under the chestnut trees.

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Derrick said...

Definitely wouldn't describe the "dog vomit" as a fruit, Weaver!