Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Nothing Gold Can Stay

This was the other really interesting fungus that I ran across this summer.  At least, I think it's a fungus.
This log lies right over one of my main trails and I have to step over it nearly every day.  I've been stepping over this log since 2008 and this is the first time I've seen this.  It's the first time I've ever seen it anywhere. 

It started as just a faint hint of yellow that I wasn't sure was real and gradually progressed to the whole tree being covered in bright gold powder.

I might of thought it was some kind of mold except that the underside of the log grew into this...

This fungus proved to be exceptionally difficult to photograph.  Its inner light proved impossible to capture and none of these pictures even begin to do it justice.  The more subtle hues were colors that I have no name for and none of them showed up on film.

The white area shimmered and swirled with an opalescent sheen similar to mother-of-pearl.  The gold really did look metallic and both changed completely with the tiniest shift in angle.  The yellow powder came up out of this to cover the tree, I'm guessing that the powder is actually billions of spores.

I tried to capture a bit of the color shift, but the luminosity does not come through. Try to imagine this lit from with like a living fire opal with its own inner glow...

I tried anyway.  This year didn't bring out as many fungi as I usually see, but this and the white one were certainly the most beautiful and memorable I've come across in many years.  They are both gone now, but I will certainly be on the lookout for them next year. 


  1. I love fungi...they are so cool. This is odd I'm glad you showed it to us!

  2. That white fungus was stunning! I saw it on my phone and couldn't comment. I love fungi of all sorts and colors. Your woods is amazing :-).

  3. A blogger at saratogawoodswaters.blogspot.com loves trying to identify fungi, and knows people who can identify the ones she can't. Maybe give her a try...