Went up to the barn recently and found an amazing thing pushing up under the empty grain bags… gigantic mushrooms, 6 of them in a big clump. They were so strong that they pushed the grain bags aside in the rise from the underworld.
Just to get an idea of the size, I placed an egg from the chickens next to them (and this is an extra-large egg, mind you!). It gives a feel for the size. The front mushroom is well over a foot across and the ones behind range from 6 to 10 inches.
My mother was a mushroom lady, encouraging (with a 25 cent reward) all the kids in the neighborhood to report new batches of mushrooms to her. Rules were that you had to be the first one to report in order to get the reward and you absolutely, positively were not allowed to touch them and never, never, never eat them.
She would go and check them out and, if they were edible, would ask permission from whoever’s yard they were in to pick them. She’d saute them up and serve them for dinner or a personal snack. I didn’t like mushrooms then, to which my mother always responded, “More for me!” and would happily increase her serving and give me something else (that I would eat).
While I don’t now expect to get a reward for finding a batch of mushrooms, those last two rules were instilled in me at a very early age. I now know a little more and will touch some mushrooms (but not all) and I’ve grown to enjoy eating mushrooms but I still never, never eat them unless an expert has cleared them for consumption.
So, the mushrooms in the barn were admired from afar, photographed, and left alone. But aren’t they amazing?