Month: August 2012

Candy Stick – Allotropa virgata

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As in the previous post, our hike to Browder Ridge July 31 was full of surprises. This Allotropa virgata, Candy Stick, was photographed by Walter Siegmund, a great photographer we met on the trail, who kindly sent me these shots to use for mushroom information. How is the candy stick related to mushrooms? Well, it’s true, it is not a fungus itself and is a real plant, just a non-green plant that lives off fungi. Yes, that’s right; this plant lives almost exclusively on the mycelium of the Matsutake mushroom, Tricholoma magnivelare. A little role reversal! So……this means that if you ever find a beautiful Candy Stick, this non-green parasitic plant, mark your GPS (or long term memory bank) because you may find Matsutakes in the fall in that spot. Well, only if the Matsutake decides to fruit at that time, but that is another story. At least you know the organism is in the soil. Thanks to Walter for the interesting and clear photo!

Chanterelles already? Hericium and Trilliums? What season is this?

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Dale’s Depot Bay chanterelles in July


Hericium erinaceous

Ron and I on Browder Ridge top with new friends.  What a view!!
New friends found on Browder Ridge.

Although our spring season has ended, supposedly, I have been getting reports of chanterelles on the coast (small ones) last week near Depot Bay. Whoa. Late July?

Ron and I hiked up Browder Ridge, near Tombstone Pass, on July 31. It’s an absolutely beautiful hike full of wildflowers and vistas. It was a bit steeper (especially the first mile) and longer than we had expected, but it kept calling us to go further. Near the top of the ridge we found a small Hericium growing at the end of the log and a few hundred yards further a Trillium in full bloom. So strange. I see Trilliums on west side in March, being one of the first to bloom in the forest. Hericium usually doesn’t fruit until fall. I just don’t know what to think, but it’s all good.

If you want a spectacular hike, try Browder Ridge (off Hackleman Creek Rd.) I’ll bet the fall mushroom hunting in there is incredible.