Friday, August 13, 2010

Fairy Ring

Oberon, Titania, and Puck with Fairies Dancing
William Blake, c 1786

As I was leaving my home the other day, I saw a number of mushrooms growing in a neighbor's yard. I drove back home to get my camera. The mushrooms, Chlorophyllum molybdites, were so large, some eight inches in diameter. These mushrooms are poisonous and are most often mistaken for edible mushrooms in the United States. I took a few photos and went on my way. On the way to the grocery store, I saw lots of other mushrooms growing in lawns. I thought to myself, it must be mushroom season in Florida.

The next day on the way home I took a different route and noticed a yard with lots of mushrooms. I was so delighted because I discovered a fairy ring. I had my camera with me and I got out and took some photos. I couldn't help but imagine little fairies dancing in the center of the fairy ring; later resting under the caps of the mushrooms. My camera wasn't high enough to capture the fairy ring in it's full glory, but the mushrooms were all growing in a circle.

Gary mentioned he saw some mushrooms growing in our lawn and mowed them down. I exclaimed, "Let the mushrooms grow, let the mushrooms grow!" Gary said, "Why?" I said, "They're food for the gopher tortoise". Gary shook his head wondering if it was true. I guess he knows sometimes I live in a fantasy world. Later I let Gary know turtles do eat mushrooms and can even eat some poisonous mushrooms without ill effects.

Triumphal March of the Elf King by Night
Richard Doyle (1824-83)

Although I didn't tell Gary that mushrooms are fairy umbrellas, where fairies take refuge from the sun and rain; and a fairy ring is the dance hall of the fairies.


  1. I love this post, Linda. I have a few fairy rings in my yard and have the same thoughts about them. And, why not? We live in a world of possibility.

  2. why live in reality when you can.....
    there are mushrooms all over right now.
    There was a workshop recently that I wished I could have gone to. Then again I am such a worry wart I am not sure I would eat them.
    Best to leave them for the animals and fairies.

  3. Ah, what he doesn't know---
    Loved the post and I will now be a bit more respectiful of my fungi.
    A ticked off fairy could be scary.

  4. We used to see fairy rings all the time in Florida -- I always thought they were a 'gateway' to another world . . . . great post.

  5. So sweet! Lovely post, and who knows, mayby someday a fairy wil show herself to you!
    As Teresa said, we live in a world of possibilitiy. Even science is comming to that conclusion.....

  6. I love this post, Linda. And I believe in fairies so believe the fairy rings are as they should be. I have a friend who eats the mushrooms she picks with confidence. I'm not even thinking about doing that. Nice knowing the turtles loved a nice appetizer! And thanks for your nice comment...each day my friend is stronger...

  7. That's funny, I've been taking pictures of all the different mushrooms that are growing here in Penland. It must be mushroom season, I've not seen a fairy ring yet but I'll be looking for one now.

  8. Hi Teresa, thanks, yes possibilities. I like mushrooms just for their fleeting beauty too.

    Hi Meredith, thanks, I would never eat wild mushrooms because there are so many that are poisonous, even when we had morels growing in the mountains I didn't eat them, too worried about the poison, but I like looking at them and the fairy rings are so interesting.

    Hi Patti, thanks, no we don't want a ticked off fairy. I think of fairies as kind gentle beings though, but I guess they would wave a magic wand or something if they wanted to.

    Hi Judy, thanks, what a great thought a gateway to another world. I like that thought.

    Hi Monique, thanks, yes science is coming to that conclusion, there are so many variables in life and science.

    Hi Kittie, thanks, I know there are those who eat them with confidence but not me, I felt obligated to put in about the poisonous ones in case someone might be reading this and thinking about eating them. There apparently is a mushroom very similar to this one called the parasol that is edible, but I am no expert by any means. Glad you can be there for your friend.

    Hi Lori, thanks, nature is amazing to me and was surprised to read that some of these fairy rings can be hundreds of years old, the spores are still there even when the mushrooms have long since withered and they continue to get larger and larger.


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