MUSHROOMS IN BORDERLAND STATE PARK

Are these mushrooms of the same variety? The photos of mushrooms on the top left and bottom right are from the same mushroom, while the mushrooms pictures on the top right and bottom left are from the same mushrooms.

My main dilemma when I walk in the woods is deciding where to look: up, down, all around?  On our recent trek to Borderland State Park on Friday, a red mushroom along the path caught my eye.

Oh! A quick Google search indicated that these two mushrooms are different kinds. The mushroom on the top right could be a Russula. The top left and bottom right photos are from the same mushroom while the bottom left photo is of a mushroom nearby. I suppose they are about the same specimen..

On the other side of the path, another variety was in full bloom.  It was then that I decided to focus on mushrooms (more or less) during that walk.

 

Again, I assumed that these mushrooms are of the same kind. The big photo and the bottom left photo belong to the same mushrooms. The bottom middle picture was a photo of a different mushroom, while the photos on the top right and middle right are of mushrooms in another cluster. I grouped these photos together because they all have the warts on the cap. I figured that the mushroom at center bottom is the baby version of the others.

After all, there had been a lot of rain in the previous days, the ground was in fact quite damp during our walk, and it was humid – just the perfect conditions for mushrooms to shoot out.

 

This looks like a yellow mushroom. However, it also has some growths on the cap. Considering that the cap is not fully opened yet, this must be a relatively young mushroom. I thought the way it was opening looked like the fume mushroom in Plants Vs. Zombies. 🙂

While I was not a mycologist, and could not identify the edible from the non-edible, even toxic varieties, I was certainly beside myself with excitement to see the park and the undergrowth loaded with mushrooms of different kinds.  I was fairly sure, however, that the colorful ones were not good for eating.

 

This mushroom was growing on an open area. It looked like a white spiky ball lying close to the ground. Could this be a Gem-studded Puffball?

For this post, I tried to group together mushrooms that look alike to me.  Feel free to give me a feedback about the correctness of the grouping.  Descriptions (and even identification, Google permitting) of the mushrooms as I have observed them in the wild were also provided in the captions.

These are very tiny mushrooms with waxy caps and growing on a decaying log.

Unfortunately,  because  I was  taking pictures as fast as I could so that my family would not leave me behind and because I did not photograph the bottom of the mushrooms, I could not provide a better description of the species posted here.

I saw and took pictures of many other mushroom variety.  However, they did not turn out well.  And I am sure there were many other types that I saw but did not think of as mushrooms, and many more in the deep woods.

This was brownish white and the cap was about 2.5 inches in diameter. This was the biggest and thickest mushroom that I found.

I hope you enjoyed this mushroom gallery. Please feel free to identify the varieties you find here. Thank you.

At about 3 inches tall, this variety of mushroom was by far the tallest among those that I found in the woods. It had waxy, wet-looking, olive brown cap which was about the size of a quarter.

Daily Post:  Edible

WPC:  Collage 2

 

THE FLOWERS OF GERTRUDE BOYDEN

Cherry Blossoms

Tired of the usual walk-around-the-block that my husband and children do on weekends, my husband brought us to a nearby nature reserve, Gertrude Boyden Wildlife Refuge, for a change of scenery. I am surprised that we visited this place for the first time only last spring considering that it is only about three miles away from our house and we have been living in the area for years. Anyway, what a pleasant surprise this place was.

Dogwood

It was mid-spring when we visited. As it was, the place offered a lot of floral attractions. Well, there were the usual flowering trees of spring that I was familiar with. A few cherry blossoms were still in bloom. Pink and white dogwood greeted us as we drove into the parking lot.

Flowers are one of my favorite subjects to photograph.  I was more than thrilled to see flowers that I have not seen before, like the golden azalea-like flowers below that was growing on a tall bush  near the park parking lot.  Well, if it looks like an azalea and has the qualities of an azalea, maybe it is one.

What am I? Can you tell me who I am?

Then, there was the dark red flower whose petals look like a stiff armor from the way they stand upright. To me, it is completely exotic.

What am I?

A walk along the forest paths revealed more flowers overhead. Since I do not see these flowers planted in yards and city streets, I presume that they are not from the usual ornamental tree. Of course, I may be wrong.

What am I?

We came to a place called the fragrance garden. It looks like one cultivated in the ruins of an old house. The place was surrounded by what could have been walls of an old cottage. Jasmine and honeysuckle lent fragrance to the late afternoon breeze. Looking down, violets and flowering ground cover met our eyes.

Jasmine, yes?

As we meandered in the park,  we saw Lilies of the Valley peeking shyly from their broad foliage.  Once in while,  Pink Lady Slippers surprised us with her blushing face peeking out of the pine needle  covered ground.  Bunchberries and Canadian lilies, and unknown grew in the shade of the trees and along the paths.

Violets, for obvious reasons. 🙂

We got to the river and enjoyed the reflections of the woods on the water.  We could see clusters of water lilies with flower buds  farther away from the banks.  I promised to go back  to see them in full bloom.  Unfortunately, we missed the flowering window and the flowers were gone the next time we visited.  In the meantime, I had my fill of spring flowers.  I wish that I could pluck some for a vase or even our own garden.

What am I?

Just an aside, I am not much of a traveler and I do not have a lot of landscape pictures.  I am normally using a Nikon 5300 DSLR and a 55-200 mm lens.  It is not very well-suited for landscape shots because it does not “see” much but I find it perfect for taking flower shots and objects from a limited range.

Dogwood

I am participating in Light.co #VantagePoint project.  Light.co is a start-up company selling compact cameras which, according to company literature, has DSLR capabilities.  Wouldn’t that be awesome to have a lightweight camera that can possibly do a lot of things?  Right now, I find myself complementing my Nikon with my cellphone when I have to take wide-angle shots or to take really macro shots.  That can be the subject of another post.  Anyway, I did not receive any compensation for this post.  I just thought that the project is a fun project and the camera a very promising one.

 

Daily Post:  Pluck

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