Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Brief, Beautiful Ephemera

It's been an interesting summer for fungi.  I hike with my dog in the woods every day and I always keep an eye out for the small oddities that pop up throughout the year.  I find it fascinating that I can walk the same trails every day and yet always find something new.  The fungi never disappoint in this area.  There are some that I always see in the same place and about the same time every year.  However, there are always a couple of unique specimens that show up out of the blue and just as suddenly disappear, never to be seen again.  At least not yet. 

There hasn't been the variety or fantastic colors that I have seen in previous years, but this summer did bring out a couple of notable appearances.  This showed up under a log that lies right on the path.

I've walked past this spot a 1000 times.  It wasn't there one day and the next, there were three patches of these luminescent icicle fungi.  

That is what I named them anyway.  I have no idea what they really are as I never bother to look up these little treasures - I kind of enjoy the mystery.

I tried hard to capture the color, which was a pure, creamy white with a sort of bio-luminescent shimmer that the camera just couldn't see.

I guess you'll just have to take my word for that part.

These showed up overnight and by the third day, their luminescence had faded and become a powdery substance on the ground underneath them.  

By the fourth day, they were gone.

I've never seen these before and may never see them again.

I'm sure that someday though, when the conditions are just right, they will show up again somewhere.

Hopefully, I'll still be out in the woods looking for them.


  1. Indeed that is beautiful. I've seen something similar and I think it was called Monkeyhead Fungus, but I could be way off because there are so many kinds out there!
    This is so delicate and beautiful!

  2. What a strange but beautiful "plant." Great photography.

  3. Wow, those are beautiful! Your name is so appropriate. Thank you for sharing.

  4. I just had to try to find the name of this beautiful fungus. I think I found it; the articles I read said there's no mistaking it because it's so unique. If I found the right one, it's edible and this article tells how to prepare it. Of all things, it says that it tastes kind of like scallops. Here's a link to one of the articles: http://themushroomforager.com/2010/09/29/lions-mane-a-foolproof-fungus/

  5. You have an eye for the important things in this world.

  6. I had no idea fungi grew like that - it would indeed be super fun to see so thanks for sharing.

  7. What a lovely surprise! I've never seen anything like that.

  8. " luminescent icicle fungi " Perfect name if you ask me. Pretty cool looking. Thanks for sharing with us!

  9. Whatever it is, it's beautiful!