Lion’s Mane – R.I.P.

For at least the past four years, the wound on this sawtooth oak has produced a large and beautiful Hericium erinaceum or Lion’s Mane mushroom. Last year, I harvested the one in this picture and it weighed in at 3 1/2 pounds. A month or so later another smaller fruiting occurred in the lower section of the wound. Unfortunately, this was to be its last.

Located on the front lawn of the Oak Ridge Unitarian Universalist Church in Oak Ridge, the tree has been removed, along with many others, to make way or a new Kroger Supermarket and adjacent shops. A 15-acre section at the corner of N. Illinois and the O.R. Turnpike is our latest retail development. As a county commissioner, I am glad to see new retail, but as a mycophagist I mourn the passing of the Hericium tree, and it is only now that I can reveal its location.