Tag Archives: NB foraging

Leccinum piceinum

20 Jul

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Here are some photos from a few weeks ago when I gathered a bunch of Leccinum piceinum for drying. The safety in eating orange and red capped Leccinum has been in question for the last decade as a number of folks in NA have suffered GI distress after eating these mushroom fresh and possibly under-cooked but maybe well cooked as well? Supposedly no one has had any issues with the dried mushrooms which can be used in soups or cooked after rehydration. I suspect drying is the way to go if you have any interest in eating red or orange capped Leccinum mushrooms which are usually difficult to identify to specific name.

These mushrooms are real standouts in mossy spruce forest anywhere from late June till November when conditions are right in the Maritimes.

A look under the cap at the pore layer and loose tissue along the edge of the cap.

This is probably the easiest red/orange Leccinum to ID due to it growing in mossy spruce areas with no birch or poplar trees to complicate matters as there are several types of Leccinums growing under those hardwood trees.

Last look at quite a photogenic Maritime mushroom. ciao

 

 

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Marsh Woundwort

15 May

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Of course as the day began I had no intention of gathering a few of these very early to appear Stachys palustris (Marsh Woundwort) which I will transplant into my garden near some stinging nettle. The plants will produce plenty of tubers similar to what you see here by this Fall. These were gathered by just poking my fingers into the soil and feeling for the tubers if they were close by, I was actual looking for wild mushrooms today though these and a few other plants stole the show as I walked in the meadow and floodplain along the river including burdock, yellow nut-sedge and  the Maritime wild food favorite fiddleheads which I’ll also display in another short post today.

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Here is a plant growing from a small tuber running flat a 1/2 inch under the soil, also the tubers can run straight down. I planted one of these Marsh Woundwort tubers in a large pot a few years back and was pleasantly surprised with the numbers of long thin tubers and also rhizomes it produced.

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Come the fall the new tubers can be eaten raw or cooked in numerous ways, a very tasty food not often gathered in most of its range.

Chaga in a winter hinterland

1 Jan

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Way back in the last days of 2015 I decided to go and harvest my winter chaga before the snow became to deep on a cool -12 C afternoon. It has been cold enough lately so all the main medicinal properties should be locked in tight in this chaga mushroom. With only 5 inches of snow on the ground this was quite easy walking through thick mostly conifers only 100 meters off a path to this paper birch tree which I found in the summer, at that time this tree was able to produce leaves in some of the top branches so the medicinal flow through the tree trunk is still fresh.

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Summer view (July 24/2015) of same chaga mushroom.

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A photo capturing some of the snowiness of the day.

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Something new as I made a phone video which I thought I could upload directly here at wordpress but that turned into quite an adventure ending with me joining Yahoo-Flickr to stage any clips I’d like to embed here on this blog. I learnt a few little things along the way, like how to hold the phone on my next attempt, anyway a glitch or 2 in uploading but not to bad for a first try. ciao

A litter of Cats

18 Oct

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Only found one small area of Catathelasma ventricosum today which was more than OK as I was on another mission, but with bright caps up to 20 cm across these mushrooms certainly stand out from a distance as you may notice above.

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This was an unexpected find of Cats which will send me asap to some of my more familiar haunts of this large fall mushroom which I had already given up on this year as only a few appeared several weeks ago.

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Although I usually dry most of what I gather of this mushroom, this has been the year of the pickle for me and these mushroom should be excellent for that process.

 

Maritime Matsutake mix-upables

5 Oct

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Here is a look at the first Matsutake I found this year, a few folks at the NS Foray were curious about the Matsutake so here are some photos to help a bit. I myself need to catch up on what is going on and change the photos in my White Matsutake page as there have been some name changes with some more big ones not far off.

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I for many years called this mushroom in the above photos also White Matsutake though I kinda suspected it was more likely a  Tricholoma Caligatum which was growing under spruce and smelled and tasted very much little Matsutake and made a great spicy tea when dried and boiled with Chaga and then cream added. This mushroom can sometimes have a very long slim stem which usually lifts easily from the moss or soil, unlike the Matsutake who puts up quite a battle. This mushroom seems to match an already named mushroom from the conifer forest of northern Europe know as Tricholoma dulciolens, so time to move some photos and change to the current names.

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Next a mushroom most folks are unfamiliar with in the Maritimes though it is common in the western Canada and also parts of Asia. This big brown capped mushroom is often mistaken for a Matsutake so since I have one here, check out the Imperial Cat – Catathelasma imperiale which is not considered an edible mushroom in some NA field guides, though its close relative the grey capped Catathelasma ventricosum is know to be a good edible and far more common in the east than the Imperial Cat.

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Here are the 3  brownish capped Matsutake-like mushrooms together which will give you Maritimers interested in gathering the Matsutake a better idea on what is out there. The real Matsutake is the middle mushroom in both photos.

Time to forage a field

4 Nov

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It’s not to late to still find some good edible mushrooms even with the early morning temps hovering near the freezing point. Here is a nice Boletus to prove it. Today I’ve noticed a lot of activity near my usual gathering grounds as deer hunting season has recently started so it may be wise to make myself a lot more visible, so its time to appear out into some open fields. The key here is to select areas which are not sprayed and safe to walk around in, wear hunter orange just in case someone is where they shouldn’t be. Here are some of the mushrooms you may encounter this week in shore- line picnic parks, well travelled walking trails and open recreational areas in the Maritime provinces.

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Blewits

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Horse mushrooms

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Graylings are sometimes in open heath &  grassy areas as long as there is also hair-cap moss.

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You know it’s kind of nice out here in the sun on these cold ones. ciao

The Big Cats are here 2

2 Nov

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A rainy, windy day here in New Brunswick, Canada with a few large conifers snapping their trunks in the forest this afternoon close beside me, later on we have a very good chance of seeing some snow on the ground early tomorrow, but for now let’s look at this large fall mushroom.

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Here we see the mushroom basket with mostly Sheep polypore and the big mushroom I want to introduce here today, also to the right are some fading bunchberry plants and the tiny round leaf plant below which is sometimes called Creeping Snowberry (Gaultheria hispidula) and I must mention these leaves do make a nice wintergreen tasting tea. Click on the photo for a better look.

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Now back to a time when there wasn’t anything in the basket, with me starting out to notice why in some parts of Europe this mushroom is known as the potato mushroom, but until I removed the stem from the moss and soil I wasn’t quite sure what this mushroom was as the cap alone resembles a large version of both the White Matsutake and also the Swollen-stalked Cat.

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Oh, this one is the Imperial Cat, (Catathelasma imperiale) – quite striking isn’t it.

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I’ve been finding just a few of these mushrooms for the last month in this area which is new to me this year so it is interesting to piece together what this edible is known as in other areas of the world. In mountainous areas of Asia and Western N.A this mushroom is mostly known as the Big Cat or Imperial Cat. It is gathered and sold in Markets in Asia and also exported as a food and as a medicinal product, but in North America it is barely considered edible and rarely gathered with its close relative the Swollen-Stalked Cat considered the better edible, as for Europe where it is eaten usually pickled or preserved in oil before consuming. The texture is firmer than most edible mushrooms and I do see that in one very well known Hotel restaurant in Hong Kong it is a key ingredient in one of their Fall season soups.

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Here is a look at the Maritime’s 2 Catathelasma species, C imperiale on the left and C ventricosum on the right. As a rule they seem to be of similar size though the C imperiale I found today did weigh close to 1 lb which is much larger than the usual ones I find. As you can see there are a few differences in flesh, gill and cap colors, but for me the stem ring and the small area directly above it are very different especially in the young mushrooms, click on to see this. So keep an eye open for these not so rare big Maritime Cats many think only live in the mountains out in the western part of NA . ciao

For ages

2 Apr

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It has been awhile since I’ve entered any post on foraging, so I decided to show a couple photos to explain my absence. The above photo is from my front step looking out across the street at 6.30 AM this morning. With all the beautiful snow around I’ve had a great opportunity to plan which new wild foods to try this year and I’ve become quite interested in gathering some of the edible grasses and sedges in my local area in coming months.

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Here is a photo of one of the few grasses still visible from last years growth and I collected these along the edge of a highway a few days ago just to check out which member of the Phragmites family they were.  Phragmites is the largest grass in Canada’s maritime provinces and these grass stems here were sticking out a few feet above a 4 ft bank of snow. Now I have these culms stuck in the snow beside my shed to remind me of the ground cozily blanketed below my feet and the many wonders preparing to soon arise. ciao

Mushrooms, Today’s frosty 5

19 Oct

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As usual things did not turn out as planned and the mushroom I was most interested in finding is not out yet as it will probably take a few more rains and frosty nights. Nevertheless here are a few good wild edibles which were making an appearance today. In the photo there are over a hundred Grayling mushrooms from the bottom of the photo to the basket, sometimes things are hard to see even when they are right under your feet..

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Grayling, Cantharellula umbonata

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Catathelasma ventricosum

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Wood Blewit, Lepista nuda

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Meadow waxycap, Hygrocybe pratensis

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Lactarius deterrimus

http://nbharbinger.wordpress.com/2013/10/19/what-really-happened-in-rexton/

Click above If you are interested in interbeing, here is a peek at some current events taking place in New Brunswick at this time. ciao

Enough Hedgehogery

26 Sep

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Yah, I’ve been bombarding you with these Hydnum repandum lately though this will be the last post this year on this choice edible mushroom.

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A good look at the teeth on the underside of the cap.

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Some more large half pounders.

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These mushrooms are great fresh and also make a nice powdered mushroom once dried. ciao