Gnome with toadstools

                                       A FESTIVAL OF FUNGI

Autumn is always stunning here in the Blue Mountains of New South Wales, but  instead of looking up at the changing leaves I find myself enchanted  by all manner of beautiful fungi on tree trunks and stumps, and popping up through the leaf litter. I must confess  I know very little  about fungi, so I can’t identify many.

I think these tiny red ones are my favourite, especially contrasting with the green lichen.


Here is a red one I certainly don’t like.  It smells like rotting flesh…horrible. I have banned my husband from putting wood chips on garden beds, because they thrive in it.

My deadly enemy.. Aseroe rubra.

These are quite sweet.


There are some that look just like pikelets, I haven’t tried them yet though.

Just need a bit of butter!
















These strange brown ‘toasted’ ones popped up in the lawn, which to be honest is mostly moss.


This one was growing all alone  in the leaf litter, and reaching for the sky in the morning sunshine.

Shining in the light.



As the daylight faded one day I even experimented using the flash on my little camera.















Some were a bit rain affected when I found them.










The fungi below must be related I think.










A dear little heart growing on a stone.












Such a delicate one; a bit like a sea sponge.









Now the fungi in the next pics  are edible; well so they say.

Pine mushroom

Pine mushroom

On the left and above  are pine mushrooms. That’s the common name, because they growunder pine trees. I’ve tried these, but I can’t say I’m impressed.  The one on the right looks reassuringly  like an ordinary old field mushroom. I might fry this up and have it on toast. If you really want to try some mushrooms, pop up to Govett’s café in the village.


Safe to eat, but I don’t bother.









With butter and parsley.

Look, these are the ‘storybook’ red toadstools with white spots. They  were growing under an oak tree. I wonder if this is their preferred location?  I managed to capture their entire life cycle in one grouping.  The white scales on the immature one will separate and form the white spots. Isn’t that interesting? I even know the correct name for these; Amanita muscaria. Just quietly, I think they are the ‘magic’ mushrooms that play with your mind.

Up it comes. Not much red yet.

Red peeping through the next day.

Oh At their quaintest.









Oh good grief, it’s that gnome again.

Fungi in the Blue Mountains





Makes my phone look small.





Huge, and past its prime.,










Our festival of fungi even rated a mention in the local Blue Mountains Gazette’. We may never see its like again. Mind you, I have been looking more carefully recently, so perhaps we have always had more fungi than I was aware of.

UPDATE   –  I found even more this morning.                  



My associate  Editor Des has been studying fungi for some time. He likes to work ‘in the field’  so to speak.


Editor Des making nature notes.E

Making nature notes



  1. What magical illustrations these could become for a children’s fantasy tale.

    • Pauline

      I found lots more today, Heather. I’m becoming obsessed!

      • A very beautiful and healthy obsession unless you extend to random taste samples 🙂

  2. What an unusual collection of fungi and mushrooms you have in the Blue Mountains. It’s a wonderland of colour i the forests woodland near you. Your photograph was a very attractive portrait.

    • Pauline

      Yes Heather, and all in our garden or just outside in the lane. Thanks for your kind words re my new pic. Oh dear, getting on a bit though.

  3. Thank you so much for sharing these. I’ve enjoyed the last half hour on your blog and love your pictures. I found you via Marketing for Creatives.

  4. Thank you for sharing your journey and insights on mushroom. This is very educational.
    Thank you!

    • Pauline

      I’m glad you found it interesting, David. Thanks for taking the trouble to leave a comment.

  5. Thank you for sharing these wonderful photos! I can not stop to be in awe always with nature on how magical it is. I love these shots!

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