NewsLetter: July 2019
It’s July and summer is in with hot days and all kinds of new things popping out. For mushroom season this means a variety of goodies. It’s been a wonderful start for Chicken of the Wood, which have been wildly abundant. The Boletes have just started to make an appearance and the milky mushrooms are dripping. Both of these can be tricky to learn with confidence but have distinguishing features that set the good apart from the bad. Taking a mushroom tour is a great way to learn the differences and I just so happen to have a bunch this month, keep an eye on my calendar for when they happen.
This months highlight are the beautiful Chanterelles. One of the most exciting patches to stumble upon, is one that dots the forest floor with gold! Chanterelle patches can spread out and cover large areas. Rarely will you find just a few. A popular mistake people make is picking them when they are still young and small, given time Chanterelles will grow large and resemble pretty little flowers. The smell of Chants is a pleasant one, some say they smell like apricots. I often can smell them before I even see them. The Chanterelle family is a big one and each of the different varieties are considered choice edibles. Here’s a look at the different ones you might see:
Black trumpets, Golden, Peach, Yellow foot, Cinnabar and Appalachian Chanterelles are all ones you will find in our region. A simple Sautee works best for cooking Chanterelles: https://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/4174-sauteed-chanterelles
Some of the common mistakes people make are these look alikes:
False Chanterelles and Jack O’ Lanterns. Jacks can be very poisonous and fun fact if you take a fresh one in a dark place the gills might glow green!
There are some great plants out there as well. This months feature is Jewel Weed or Spotted Touch Me Not. This plant is a special one. Poison and Sister Ivy can be a truly unpleasant experience and one of the remedies can be Jewel Weed. The two can be found, conveniently, growing near each other quite often. Jewel Weed is disguised by it’s small orange or yellow flower and red color at the base of the plant.
You can make Jewel Weed ice cubes by crushing up the plant, putting the pieces in an ice cube tray, add water and freezing. Also simply crushing up the plant and rubbing it on the infected area. Here’s a recipe to make Jewel Weed soap: https://simplelifemom.com/2015/07/26/how-to-make-poison-ivy-soap-with-jewelweed/
Until next month Y’all, happy hunting!