You read that right, Brown Jelly Fungi and Witch's Butter, is what this post is all about today. On my visit to Bernheim last Sunday, after about four days of almost constant rain, I walked along the brook at the Overlook area. As I got out of the car, I noticed all of the trees right around the parking area were completely covered in lichen growing up the trunks and branches. Moisture.
And not too far away growing vigorously on a small downed branch was this Brown Jelly Fungi. It looks as though it's ready to burst from all of the water. This Fungi grows mainly in Spring and Winter after it rains.
Brown Jelly Fungi have several nicknames such as Jelly Ear, Tree Ear and Wood Ear. Honestly, I don't think I've ever seen Brown Jelly Fungi before in my travels. I have seen this next 'sunny' Fungi which is called Witch's Butter. It was growing not far from the Brown Jelly Fungi. Normally, when you see something bright yellow and orange growing on a dead tree trunk or branch, it's a good bet it's Witch's Butter.
I read there's a species of Witch's Butter used for flavorings in soups and stews in China, however, I won't be picking this one to eat. These Fungi and the Wild Oyster Mushrooms were so fun to photograph though especially since it was dreary, overcast, and we had had rain for four to five days prior to my visit. The word on the street is the Tundra Swans have arrived in Mustatatuck and will be wintering there again this year. And hundreds of Sandhills have been passing through on their way South. I see a trip in my future. Hope your week is fairing well. ENJOY!