Science

Fungus Schmungus #4

I saw these mushrooms growing on a dead tree while walking the dog. They are called Dryad’s saddle or pheasant back mushrooms. They are edible. Here are two links to videos: Foraging for Dryad’s Saddle/Pheasant Back Mushroom How to cook Pheasant backs & Ramps (Dryads Saddle & Wild leeks)

The Candler Oak

A live oak is a species of oak that keeps it’s leaves during the winter months. The live oak pictured is the famous Candler Oak in Savannah, Georgia which was planted in the 1700s.

Fungus Schmungus #3

This mushroom was growing on a dead tree in my daughter’s yard. The scientific name is Sarcodontia crocea. Sarco means “flesh.” dontia means “teeth.” crocea means “yellow.”

Fungus Schmungus #2

I found this mushroom while walking the dog. It was growing where there had previously been a tree stump and looked like a pepperoni pizza. The scientific name of this mushroom is Ganoderma sessile. Ganoderma means “shining skin.” The Ganoderma family are edible. Other Ganoderma species called “reishi” mushrooms are said to have healing properties… Read more »

Hedge Balls, The Magical Fruit

As I was recently driving north on Highway 65 in northern Missouri, I saw numerous hedge ball trees full of the strange yellow fruit. My grandmother used to put hedge balls in her basement to get rid of crickets and spiders. The weird fruits are also known as Osage oranges, hedge apples, and monkey brains…. Read more »

Wolf Spider with Egg Sac

I saw this wolf spider in the driveway, carrying her egg sac to protect her spider babies until they hatch. After the eggs hatch, she will carry the baby spiders on her back until they can fend for themselves. There is a nice blogpost about wolf spiders at https://animals.howstuffworks.com/arachnids/dont-be-afraid-big-bad-wolf-spider.htm

Fungus Schmungus #1

Mushrooms fascinate me. I found these odd fellows growing in my flower beds. These are called stinkworts, and they do stink. When I dig in the wood mulch, I find white strings which are fungus mycelia. There is a more technical discussion of “fun guys” in garden mulch here.

Fuzzy Wuzzy Soap Mystery Solved!

When I was a kid, I had a bar of Fuzzy Wuzzy soap, a soap that grows hair (yeah, no kidding). There is a good blogpost by Randy Blazenhoff. Randy’s blog includes a video of the Fuzzy Wuzzy commercial which hooked my mom into buying the soap. After the soap is all used up with… Read more »