Sunday, September 23, 2007

Fungus Among Us

This is a Stinkhorn Mushroom of the Mutinus Caninus kind. It grows happily in my garden. Several of them actually. Despite what you may think, I like them, I don't mind if they like my garden even though they actually do stink as their name states. I know this because you cannot just tell me they stink, yes, I must find out for myself, gross as it may sound, however, I do not eat mushrooms, I do not like the taste or their rubbery texture. Yuck. Mushrooms are very attractive looking though, growing on the forest floor or like this one, in my garden.

Let learn about the Stinkhorn:
Very common in the Chicago area
Grows from a white egg shape capsule, mine was underground
They really do stink
Brown slime on top contains spores which attach to flies and insects and travels to reproduce
It really is slimy, I checked
Not harmful to any gardens or grasses

My infestation of stinkhorn may have come from the mulch I purchased for my garden or from the slimy feet of a visiting fly. In any case, I don't mind, by afternoon the sun shrivels them up and they disappear faster than they came. An interesting part of nature.