Friday, 20 September 2013


I am a great mushroom lover and finding a specimen like this one makes me overwhelmed with happiness. The one of the reasons for this reaction is the fact that this fungus is very rare. It is 
Polyporus umbellatus, the Umbrella Polypore (once Grifola umbellata). 

Notice my hand underneath, and this is only a half of the whole bush!

The fruiting body consists of numerous caps growing from the base. The mushroom prefers oak stumps. This one of mine weighed 2 kg! It is edible, very savory and delicious. I gave a half of it to my neighbour who also loves mushrooms but he is more interested in their edibility. I, on the other hand, love the mushrooms in all their aspects and for years notice and photograph all the mushrooms I can find.

Well, the mushroom is edible. Fry it in on the butter with a bit of onion or garlic, season with some salt and pepper. Eggs might be added too at the end of cooking.
There is another specimen similar to this one - Grifola frondosa, Hen of the Woods. It is edible too so, no fatal mistakes possibile.

Check for my other findings on my other blog

Finally Finished!

I am on two weeks leave enjoying the things I like: music, peaceful reading in the cosy corner of my living room, going out to the woods and making pretty (I think) things. A passionate crafts women, that's what I am. I have finally finished the cross shaped succulent gardens ordered some weeks ago. Normally, making this hypertufa planters goes smoothly, but this time I had some troubles finishing them.

As the Bible says: 'To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven...' This verse crossed my mind when I was making this hypertufa crosses. Surely, hot summer days are the best time to do it. The planters are dry in 24 hours and still workable - I need to brush them off with a steel brush. 

Last week when I made them, the weather was cold and wet. It was raining and my planters took ages to dry. The two of them broke in a half when I started to brush the sides! Luckily, they may be repaired. So I did it but they again had to dry for some time.

Planting them requires lots of planting material and some time but, that is the best part of the whole job. I am rather content with the final result and I hope my customer will be too.