The University of Washington Arboretum is one of my favorite places in Seattle. There’s plenty of nooks and crannies to chill out in beneath the towering trees and space to spread out on the open grass. Here are some spring time mushrooms popping up in the arboretum and on the UW campus. Click on the picture for some better views.
The Spring agrocybe was a challenge to ID because it looks like so many other mushrooms, but the Shaggy mane was quite remarkable to see. What a dramatic deliquescence! I was inspired to paint the stages of the Shaggy mane deliquescence for one of my finals in my botanical illustration class. And what a mess it made within hours. Thank you Rita Moore for picking it for me! The inky caps, I think they are one of my favorites.
In spring, I also go to a weekend program on lichens at the North Cascades Institute in Diablo, WA taught by Dr. Katherine Glew, Lichenologist at the University of Washington in Seattle. Hurrah! The Pacific Northwest is a lichen fantasy land. I was always intrigued by the lichen I’d see growing on trees and rocks in Seattle, so now here was a whole weekend program! Nestled in the cascades, the air is purer so there is a greater diversity of lichens than in the city. The manifestation between fungus and algae joining forces expresses itself as lichen, but it is a very specific and targeted relationship. You’ll just hafta read more about these fascinating things here. I’m not seeing as much lichen here in Brooklyn as in Seattle so I have kind of forgotten the about the lichen. I have let the lichen go from the grip of my mind. I may post pictures of the Cascade lichens at a later date but for now I want to share this photo of a false morel on my lichen weekend. Looks like a shrunken basketball.