Wednesday, October 10, 2007

I'm A Fun Guy?

So fun that I spent some of this morning out in the back garden with a camera.

It appears that one of the thinks that happens when a lot of building takes place on a plot of land is that all sorts of bits and pieces get dumped in the garden prior to being covered over with the topsoil. Bits of wood and timber being pretty much top of that list. And as the wood rots, it provides an idea breeding ground for fungi.

After a couple of warmish days, and a downpour yesterday, I woke up this morning to see a fine crop of assorted mushrooms or toadstools in the back garden.

We have two main types appearing. I'm fairly sure that the predominant type are coprinus micaceus - glistening ink caps. And they either go very dark as they mature, or we have another member of the coprinus family* growing alongside them.

* there is some debate about whether all the members of the ink cap family are in fact properly calssified as coprinus, the latest DNA evidence tending to suggest that there are at least two different species that have independantly evolved the deliquescing dark gills.

If anyone is 100% sure that I'm wrong, and they know precisely what I've got in my garden, let me know. Right now, I'm about 80% sure, and the websites are 80% sure that the fungi are "edible but not exactly nice". If it turns out that they are actually poisonous, I'll need to do something about them.


Iain said...

Edible mushrooms come prepackaged as steak and mushroom pie, I'd avoid those ones. In fact I'd avoid going into the garden altogether - it's far too scary.

They look a bit alienesque to me. Best take off and nuke them from orbit to be on the safe side.

RDewsbery said...

Nah. Phil tried a handful from our garden last year, and declared them edible.

Edible in the sense that they didn't cause any noticeable ill-effects; all the guidebooks suggest "you can probably eat them, but why bother?"