Tag Archives: mushrooms

For the Love of Fungi and Leprechauns By Noreen Tyers

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From childhood I have been fascinated with all different fungi.  Being a child who climbed trees and would sit for a time and take in her surroundings, I was conscious of Nature and growing things.

I came from an Irish background and a grandfather that did instill the magic of the imagination.  I travelled on many adventures with him, touring his workshop and watching him create his many talents and thoughts. Grandpa always found a lesson in everything he did and always shared his knowledge.  

He was a man of many talents and one thing he did was make Dandelion Wine.  He had his recipe which had been in his family for years.  Come Dandelion season, he would be getting ready to pick his blossoms, he would ask if I would like to help.  Out to the woodshed he went and picked up an old apple basket and away we would go,

It seems to me the best place for the blossoms was the green space by the railway track.  We did have to walk the path at the end of the field across on the other side of Gardner Street.  The field/bush had many things to be discovered and one thing I had noticed was the fungi growing on the side of the tree. Because my Grandpa was always so smart and had the answers, I asked him about it.  As we were walking, we passed an old tree and there it was a charming growth on the trunk of the tree. When I asked about it, he said well you see that is where your leprechaun lives.

Laura Logan

Now I did believe that this is where my interest came from.  He explained that every little person had a leprechaun to watch over them, but they were hard to find, as they sometimes became invisible.  They did not like to be found as they were always watching out for your well being.  He told me if you approached the fungi and looked under it you might just find your little leprechaun sitting there. I do have to admit as we were on a mission for those yellow blooms from the dandelion, I did not get the chance to look.

I have to admit I never did find my Noisey O’Really in all my time of looking, although there were times I felt someone on my shoulder. 

You know things do come back into your life again and teachings you received as a child do come back to be.  When my nephew was about six years old he would come to visit for a week during the summer and stay at our home.  He was a delightful child.

At the time we had a dog I would walk and Kevin  would come with me on a tour of our walk around the block.  One day on a tree by the spot between the sidewalk and the street there was a fungus on the trunk of the tree.  It was much too close to the ground for me to bend and look for the leprechaun.

Like any Irish descendant, Aunt would pass the story on,  and she told him that If he was quiet and did not make too much noise, he might find a leprechaun.  It seems to me whenever he visited he would come on my dog walk.  The only thing was the leprechaun also eluded Kevin.

I guess we were not quiet enough and I am still waiting to find my Leprechaun.

From the ✒ of Noreen

October 2021

Hair Attention — Noreen Tyers

The Handmade Tablecloth — Noreen Tyers

Cutting a Christmas Tree at the House of Old at R. R. # 4 — Noreen Tyers

Making the Fudge for that Special School Affair 1940s Noreen Tyers

The Teeter Totter Incident Noreen Tyers

Childhood Movie Nights at Reliance Motor Court in Eastview — Noreen Tyers

Hats, Ogilvy’s and Gaudy Teenage Years — Noreen Tyers

Sending Thoughts of Winter to You, from my Wee Dog Ruffy Noreen Tyers

A Trip in the Carrying Case– Noreen Tyers

Just Me Growing Up in the Early 1940’s Noreen Tyers

Grandma and the Cute Little Mice– From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

Another Broken Bed Incident — Stories from Richards Castle — Noreen Tyers

Lets Play Elevator- Charles Ogilvy Store — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

At Church on Sunday Morning From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

Jack’s in Charge-Scary Stories — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

Adventures at Dalhousie Lake at the Duncan’s Cottages —- From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

I am Afraid of Snakes- From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

Hitching a Ride Cross Town — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

My Old Orange Hat –From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

Out of the Old Photo Album — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers

Snow Road Ramblings from Richards Castle — From the Pen Of Noreen Tyers

Summer Holidays at Snow Road Cleaning Fish — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

Snow Road Adventures- Hikes in the Old Cave — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

Putting Brian on the Bus– Stories from my Childhood Noreen Tyers

My Childhood Memory of Richard’s Castle –From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

Grandpa’s Dandelion Wine — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

My Wedding Tiara — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

The Art of Learning How to Butter Your Toast the Right Way — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

Smocked Dresses–From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

The Kitchen Stool — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

The Flying Teeth in Church — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

The Writings of Noreen Tyers of Perth

Memories of Grandpa’s Workshop — Noreen Tyers

Cleaning out Grandmas’ Fridge — Noreen Tyers Summer Vacation at Richard’s Castle

My Flower Seeds — From the Pen of Noreen Tyers of Perth

My Barbra Ann Scott Doll –Noreen Tyers

Greetings From Ruffy on Groundhog Day Noreen Tyers

That Smell Of The Lanark County SAP Being Processed — Noreen Tyers

Adventures at Dalhousie Lake at the Duncan’s Cottages — Noreen Tyers

The old Sheepskin Slippers Noreen Tyers

Photos of Roy Brown Park — Mark Smith

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Photos of Roy Brown Park — Mark Smith
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I love these fungi mushrooms and when Mark said he had seen some at Roy Brown Park I asked him to photograph them. Humour me please. 🙂 Roy Brown Park is located behind the MVCA office and is owned and maintained by the Town of Carleton Place. It currently features 0.5km of well-groomed walking trails and an off-leash dog park.

All photos from Mark Smith with thanks

All photos from Mark Smith with thanks

October 13th 2021

Last night our council passed a bylaw for tree conservation. Very Very proud

Read more about the fungi here..

Oddities — Lanark County Puffball Mushrooms

Beware of the Lanark County Fairy Rings
The Faeries of McArthur Island- Dedicated to the Bagg Children

Read more about parks here.

1963 Riverside Park — Stills from a 8 MM Movie Camera — Larry Clark

Riverside Park Comments Larry Clark ‘The Dip’

St. Mary’s and Riverside Park 1969

What Justin Bieber is Missing by Not Coming to Carleton Place

When Were Some of the Trees Planted in Riverside Park?

The Carleton Place Riverside Park Booth Etc. Etc.

The Secret Sanctuary of a Carleton Place Neighbourhood

The Mysterious Shoe Trees

Let’s Build Cabins at Riverside Park!

When the Circus came to Carleton Place

Tug of War 1970’s Riverside and Centennial Park Carleton Place

Just Beat It! Carnival Riot in Carleton Place at Riverside Park

Before and After at Centennial Park

So What Did You Do in Riverside Park?

It was the Boathouse that Went On and On….

The Carleton Place Riverside Park Booth Etc. Etc.

Somewhere in the Lanark County Woods– Inukshuk — Faeries of the Woods?

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Somewhere in the Lanark County Woods– Inukshuk — Faeries of the Woods?
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Photos Dana Cote

QUESTION: when walking down an old logging road and you come across multiple tree stumps carved into mushroom caps—are these signposts for something, or just a bored reclusive whittler?

 

Kevin Locke Anderson side road is where these mushrooms are and I believe they were made by the guys that log back there

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Photos Dana Cote

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Photo-Jennifer E Ferris

Jennifer E Ferris–I know them also. I think they are simply a sign of the owner, or perhaps Lanark County’s version of an Inukshuk, ie: I was here.
Have you yet found the wee chair from a stump? It’s adorable!

 

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Photos Dana Cote

 

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Photos Dana Cote

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Photos Dana Cote

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Photos Dana Cote

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Photo- Jennifer E. Ferris

 

I love things like this. I would like to think faeries had their way with these trees, but I know better. But I can dream can’t I? More like my mystical creatures wear logging boots and caps. Has anyone any idea who carved these?  These mushrooms carved from a tree stump still rooted in the forest ground are some of my Lanark County Wonders.

 

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Walking and Hiking around Lanark County click here

California Road Trail click here..

Believe it or not, the California Road exists. It is found in the Municipality of Lanark Highlands, in Darling Ward, south of White Lake. Although this road is well recognized and publicized on local maps and, it has a long history in the annuals of local settlement, it goes through some very wild Canadian Shield country and is a very rough, unmaintained road, passable only with any vehicle that has at least twelve inches clearance. California Road makes a very good walking trail.

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One of my favourite clippings today.. Clipped from The Ottawa Citizen, 15 Jan 1938, Sat, Page 2 Carp Farmers Believed that the Faeries Held Meeting CLICK to read,

Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place.

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)

 

 

relatedreading

Oddities — Lanark County Puffball Mushrooms

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Oddities — Lanark County Puffball Mushrooms

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Photos from the Canadian and Gazette files from the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum

 

 

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Maureen Logan (nee McDonald) and Christy Zavitske McNeely–Photos from the Canadian and Gazette files from the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum

Ben MacRae That’s one giant puff-ball, isn’t it? A large mushroom like growth. I found a few as a kid and mom would dice them up and fry them in butter. So yummy.

Wesley Parsons We would slice the big ones up and fry them like a slice of ham – very delicious…

Linda Seccaspina Was anyone afraid of poisoning??? Just asking..🙂

Krista Lee No,I remember eating puff balls and morels

Ben MacRae No, we all trusted the wisdom of our elders! It wasn’t their first rodeo! lol

 

The giant puffball, Calvatia gigantea (earlier classified as Lycoperdon giganteum), reaches a foot (30 cm) or more in diameter, and is difficult to mistake for any other fungus. It has been estimated that a large specimen of this fungus when mature will produce around 7 × 10¹² spores. If collected before spores have formed, while the flesh is still white, it may be cooked as slices fried in butter, with a strong earthy, mushroom flavor.

Puffballs are sometimes found in a large circle called a “fairy ring”. Check out the page on fairy rings to learn more about this fun phenomenon.

Giant puffball mushrooms have possible medicinal uses as well. Remember those trillions of spores they produce? The dried spores can slow bleeding if they’re used as a coagulant. They were reportedly used in Native American folk medicine to treat bleeding and prevent infection.

The use of Calvatia gigantea in folk medicine led researchers to to investigate it further. In the 1960’s they isolated the substance calvacin, which was shown to inhibit sarcoma in lab mice. Calvacin is now cited as one of the first substances with antitumor activity isolated from a mushroom

f you are certain you’ve found the right mushroom it should also be the right age. Only the younger, immature giant puffballs are edible. Again make sure the flesh is white and solid. Anything brown, broken, soft, or full of brown, dusty spores is too mature to eat.

Eat puffball mushrooms soon after harvesting as they don’t keep well. You may find them too mushy after freezing and thawing. It is possible to dry and reconstitute them although they may be a little tough.

The most popular way to eat them is to fry in oil with a batter (really good). These mushrooms can be a versatile food item. Some other quick ideas to enjoy them:

  • Sautéed alone or with vegetables.
  • Broiled alone with a marinade or in conjunction with another recipe.
  • Dice them into smaller pieces and stir fry in place of tofu.
  • Use instead of eggplant in any recipe. Giant puffballs are a great replacement for eggplant!
  • Remove the top and hollow out the mushroom into a bowl. Cook the hollowed out pieces with some other ingredients (peppers, spices, whatever you like) and place back into the puffball shell. Wrap the whole thing in foil and bake in the oven, checking on it occasionally to see if it’s done. Delicious!

Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  26 Sep 1951, Wed,  Page 3

 - MOUNTAINOUS MUSIUIOOM This ponderous puff-ball,...

Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  26 Sep 1951, Wed,  Page 3

 

Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place.

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)

 

 

relatedreading

Beware of the Lanark County Fairy Rings

The Faeries of McArthur Island- Dedicated to the Bagg Children

Did Bad Nutrition Begin with Importing Onions?

Cry Me a Haggis River!

Beware of the Lanark County Fairy Rings

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Beware of the Lanark County Fairy Rings

 

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Die to the damp weather lots of mushrooms have been spotted through Lanark County and even the rare Blue Mushroom have been seen. If you do not know the history of the Blue Mushroom be careful around them as they are said to be food for the Leprechauns. Leprechauns eat some nuts, different types of wild flowers and mushrooms.

Did you know that under European law Leprechauns are a protected species? So if on your wanderings you happen to spot a leprechaun, you can take a picture, but you must leave the little fellow alone– even in Lanark County.

 

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Shaggy Mains Photo by Penny Foster- The Beckwitch in Beckwith

 

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Right Next to Giant Tiger in Carleton Place

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Right Next to Giant Tiger in Carleton Place

There is a said to be a  Leprechaun colony located in Portland, Oregon. The journalist who first said that it was a leprechaun colony—these leprechauns could only be seen by him—wrote about the adventures of the leprechauns who lived here. They say the leprechaun is the poor cousin of the fairy — but if you see any out and about or any fairy rings– please let me know.

 

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Perfect Fairy Ring

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Right Next to Giant Tiger in Carleton Place–There was a semblance of a fairy circle there but someone had kicked them all over. NO leprechauns for us!

 

fairy ring, also known as fairy circleelf circleelf ring or pixie ring, is a naturally occurring ring or arc of mushrooms. The rings may grow to over 10 metres (33 ft) in diameter, and they become stable over time as the fungus grows and seeks food underground. They are found mainly in forested areas, but also appear in grasslands or even in the Lanark Highlands.

Fairy rings are the subject of much folklore and myth worldwide—particularly in Western Europe. While they are often seen as hazardous or dangerous places, they can sometimes be linked with good fortune.

Of course it can take a darker turn when the fairies curse those humans who dare to intrude upon their circle. Locals in Somerset, England, used to give fairy rings the forbidding nickname “galley-traps” as late as the twentieth century. They believed that when a man who had committed a crime passes through a fairy ring, he is doomed to hang within the year.

In Scandinavia, you didn’t have to be a criminal to fall victim to the curse: anyone entering a fairy ring would be haunted by illusions forever after, unable to tell reality from imagination. The curse may be related to a specific aspect of life, like food: one tale warns that after taking part in the fairy’s dance circle, a man will crumble to dust at the first taste of non-fairy cooking. Other folk tales warn of more general punishments such as disease, bad luck, or an early death.

In all these tales, a ring of toadstools marks off a space distinct from the human world. Therein lies its fascination, and its peril. Whether the curious human escapes with only bruises or whether his time in fairy territory addles his brain permanently, he cannot stay with the fairies. They are beautiful and intriguing but ultimately unknowable.

 

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Clipped from The Ottawa Journal,  02 Nov 1972, Thu,  Page 5

 

 

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How to forge ahead with wild edibles in Lanark County—Sarah Cavanagh–Hometown News-August

The world is your oyster! Well maybe not your oyster in Eastern Ontario but quite possibly your leek, your berry, your apple or your fiddlehead. We are blessed in our region to have a plentiful bounty of wild edibles right outside our door.

If you have ever considered trying your hand at the 100 mile challenge, from May to October in Lanark County is the time to do it. The 100 mile challenge refers to consuming only foods grown, raised and produced within a 100 mile radius of your home. The idea was first described by J.B. MacKinnon and Alisa Smith in the book The 100-Mile Diet. The book spurned a Canadian TV series based in Mission, British Columbia that followed six families who agreed to consume only foods grown, raised and produced within a 100 mile radius of their home for 100 days.

You might be saying to yourself – I live in town, it’s not like I have access to a 100 acre farm! Alas, there is no need. This afternoon, I had a delightful bowl of wild berry crumble foraged from my backyard right in the heart of Carleton Place. You don’t need to go into the depths of the wild to find wild edibles (although it certainly offers more variety). Many can be found in backyards, parks and along public trails.

Now a word of caution to the novices in our midst. Never eat anything you aren’t 100 per cent sure is edible. Ask a local, sign up for a foraging seminar or grab a copy of the Peterson Field Guide. Many poisonous plants are mistaken for edibles and some are only edible in certain stages of growth or have certain parts of the plant that can be eaten. All wild mushrooms are a bit of a forager’s Russian roulette so study up. The reward is some delicious (and free) meals for the summer.

There are some great local resources for the foragers among you. The Valley Wild Edibles Facebook page as over 900 members, all discussing wild edibles and sharing tips and tricks.

In the past few years there have been a variety of “wild food” walks in our area hosted by groups such as the Lanark Wild Food Club. Bodywork for Women, a local company that hosts workshops and offers therapies for myofascial release, lymphatic drainage, Chinese therapeutic massage and reflexology,  hosted two talks this spring at the Carleton Place arena. You can find their page on Facebook at: facebook.com/getherfixednow/if you’d like to keep an eye out for their 2018 offerings.

These are great opportunities to learn from experts and hone your food hunting skills. The Wild Garden (www.thewildgarden.ca) hosts learning walks and online resources for the new forager. The company also offers monthly herb boxes that the website describes as an “opportunity to connect with and learn about the wild edible and healing plants of the Ottawa bioregion.” There is a theme each month and edibles are delivered to your door. Typically the boxes contain a loose tea blend, an infused honey/syrup or vinegar, a seasoning blend, a preserve, salve, incense etc.

Another great online resource is www.ediblewildfood.com, which provides recipes and blog posts on how to survive on wild edibles at various times of the year.

You may find you are not such a novice once you get reading up on the practice. There are some classic spring favourites like dandelions (which can be used in salads, as a coffee substitute or to make syrup), wild leeks, asparagus and fiddleheads that many of us local Lanark kids have harvested, eaten or at the very least heard about.

Once you hit the sweet spot between mid-June and late July the berries are plentiful – we have classics like strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and raspberries, but also some lesser known treasures like the gooseberry. These are commonly foraged items and most of you, like me, probably spent many childhood afternoons filling your faces with every sweet thing we could find growing in the fence line.

Once mid-September hits, we’ll be filling our baskets with apples that are ripe for the picking down most backroads.

There are some less common but equally delectable options – alfalfa, bull thistle, cattails, sunflowers and milkweed are all wild edibles. In fact nothing is quite as astonishing as the versatility of a cattail.

Something to remember if harvesting wild food, specifically in spring, is to never over harvest. If you want the crop to return next year you have to leave some behind and be weary of the roots. Only take what you can use. Also it’s a good to pay attention to where you are foraging to make sure there are no obvious area pollutants or bad water sources that could make the food unsafe for you to consume. Basically avoid chemical spray zones, factories or right along a big highway.

This article was first published in the August issue of Hometown News. For more articles from our August issue, pick up a print copy at a local retailer or read their digital version.

 

Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place.

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)

 

  relatedreading

 

 

The Faeries of McArthur Island- Dedicated to the Bagg Children

The Sugar Bush Fairy at Temple’s Sugar Bush

The Dreams of a Sugar Plum Fairy

 

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Forging or Foraging For Food at The Carleton Place Farmer’s Market

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I like the word forging… but the correct term is foraging.. Whatever word you use come on down to the Carleton Place Market.:)

Let there be kale!  Yes,there will be KALE this weekend at the Carleton Place Farmer’s Market!

Shiitakes are what is called an “entry level” mushroom that’s far more predictable than the oyster mushrooms, maitake, and garden giants he also grows. Producing them outdoors requires: a shady location, a supply of hardwood logs, a water source, and spawn to inoculate the logs in the spring. Over the course of the year, the fungus will run through the logs, colonise them, and produce mushrooms.

Majore Farm has freshly picked Shiitake mushrooms at the Carleton Place Farmer’s Market.These are grown in oak logs at the farm. The are grown by Doug Majore right here in Lanark county. I had some of his mushrooms and they are delicious! Come and get some for yourself at the market, they are only in season in the spring so get them before they are gone until next year.

Kira Weiler said: These are the best mushrooms ever…we picked some up last time we were at the CP farmers market…and ate them all raw before we got home…so good!!
Make your own culinary herbal garden pot for your window or patio. May 30th at 11am
Bring your own pot or purchase one at the workshop. Cost is 15.00 or 10.00 if you bring your own pot (includes all your herbs and soil). Please call 257-9005 to register

Garden Tip from Ottawa Journal 1948

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