According to the US Weather Service, July has the highest average monthly rainfall at the Knoxville Airport. It HAS been wet ,and we’re finally above normal for the year. The result has been mushrooms out the whazoo!
I’ve guided several private forays, and the clients found plenty of edibles as well as a great variety of other species. I went to one spot where I usually find a dozen or so Boletus bicolor, and there were hundreds there. The picture shows the limited number we picked due to National Park rules on limited harvest. They were delicious dipped in egg wash, then a crushed pecan/flour coating and fried in clarified butter.
Speaking of eating, I marinated some more Lactarius corrugis (earlier post) using that ratio of 1 cup olive oil and 1/2 cup mild (rice) vinegar. I took it to a pot luck, and it was well received. It’s a good way to go.
In the “things along the way” category, I collect box turtle shells in varying condition during my bushwhacking. I also see at least one live turtle every time out it seems. This week, Ellen and I saw something quite different. Two turtles were hung up. A male (red eyes) had its rear foot captured by the closed carapace of another turtle, sex indeterminate.
Turtle #2 was on its back and mucus was oozing out around turle #1′s foot. Using a knife as a pry tool we sucesfully separated the two and #1 eventually began to crawl off. #2 was most likely dead, Having observed box turtles mating, my best guess is this was a case of disengagement gone awry. Can anybody out there offer a better scenario?
Found a small rotted lobster mushroom Monday in a patch I go to. I think it’s drying out enough in the pine woods that they may be coming up any day. I’ll be checking every 2-3 days.