Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The Elf of Plants*

Today's Wonder of the World is...Mushrooms!

Flickr photo by lepista
Aren't those beautiful?
Don't those particular ones remind you of Les Schtroumpfs?
You don't know Les Schtroumpfs?
Yes you do!
You know, these guys...

Flickr photo by micpohling
The Smurfs! (By the way, did you know that the Smurfs weren't invented by Hanna Barbera? The Belgian cartoonist Peyo began putting them in comic strips back in the fifties. The French love them. At least they seemed Smurf-happy when we were there.)
Just a little fun fact. Mushrooms, with a side of smurfs!

Back to mushrooms...
Did you notice those freaky funnel shaped mushrooms beside the police smurf? Weird.
But mushrooms specialize in weird!
There are mushrooms that look like ruffly chiffon.

Flickr photo by KHall65890
And puffballs that smush into a cloud of mushroom dust!

Flickr photo by Tatemae
(Yes, smush is a technical mychological term. Not really.)

Some mushrooms are just too beautiful to be true

Flickr photo by nadiableue
and others look like human ears.

Flickr photo by niknack
Some mushrooms could be parasols for beetles.

Flickr photo by Lev Frid
And others are real parasols for ladybugs!

Flickr photo by idg
And still others are parasols for humans!

Flickr photo by VonMurr
Wait a sec. That's no mushroom.
Still, it'd be fun to sit beneath one of those.

Flickr photo by serni
Or inside a mushroom house. With the gnomes and the fairies.

Or in this one. With humans who like strange mushroom-like architecture.

Flickr photo by agilitynut
Cavemen probably liked mushrooms too. Or at least cave-boys.

Flickr photo by John of Wirral
Remember caves? Caves offer the perfect shelter against April showers.

While some mushrooms offer showers themselves!

Flickr photo by pthread1981
If you don't get your recommended daily allowance of mushrooms, you could always make one.
Out of paper...

Flickr photo by firstfold creative origami
Or marzipan. Or meringue!

Flickr photo by (monica)
Hey! There's the French Christmas treat. The bûche de noёl! The yule log! Yum!

Those French love their cèpes. One of my few regrets from our years in France is that we never made time to go mushroom hunting. Did you know that if you go mushroom hunting in France, your local pharmacist can tell you whether your mushrooms are safe to eat? It's true!
And that's a good thing. You could eat a bad one, and the next thing you know, you'd have scary mushroom visions of the Eiffel Tower!

Photo by Serero Architectes
No, I'm not hallucinating and neither are you.
Have you heard about this?
It's the Eiffel Tower, all dressed up for it's 120th anniversary with a brand new screening deck, designed by the Paris based architectural firm, Serero.
What do you think?
Don't get too used to the look because as it turns out, it's just a hoax. I'm still a little confused by this, but you can read all about what could have been, HERE.

Have a Wonder-full Tuesday, y'all!
But before you go, watch this incredible time lapse mushroom video!
Les Schtroumpfs, this one's for you!

Love, Becky
*Title taken from Emily Dickinson's poem, The Mushroom is the Elf of Plants, HERE


  1. Cool time lapse video. Mushrooms are best sauteed in butter! Yum!

    I absolutely love them, but my children and husband hate them and are grossed out when I eat them. Their loss is all I can say.

  2. I love the mushroom house...and say...where did that smurf come from??? ;)

  3. My dh made me a mushroom and tomato omelet last Sunday…
    So good…

    My oldest daughter loved smurfs when she was little. I still have drawer full of those little blue guys for the grandchildren to play with when they come for visit...


  4. Great photos and video. And thanks for the link to Following the Equator.

    Thankfully, there will be no "mushroom cap" on top of the Eiffel Tower anytime soon.

  5. I'm not a fan of mushrooms, but some of the colorful ones you have pictures of really are beautiful! I'd take a picture of those and frame them :)

  6. I guess I have to learn how to fold paper mushrooms.
    Cool post Rebecca!
    Have a great day!!

  7. You have managed to make mushrooms fun and fascinating.
    That's a pretty incredible feat.

    You should seriously apply this skill to other mundane things. Like teaching traffic school or getting my daughters to clean their rooms. (I suspect it would be reminiscant of the room cleaning scene in Mary Poppins.)

    Seriously, I enjoyed your post and the unexpected 'mushrooms' you manage to see in everday life like the umbrella and the Eiffel Tower. Truly creative!

  8. Mushrooms are one of my favorite things to eat! Those are some fascinating mushroom photos. I've always wondered what the truffles look like before those special truffle sniffing pigs find them!

  9. Hmmmph... no pics of mushrooms on pizza???

    Before moving to Florida we lived 10 miles from Kennett Square, Pa the "mushroom capitol of the world." Nothing smells more like an open grave than a 'real' dark fermenting mushroom house.

    One of the kids I coached (HS Baseball) was the son of the largest mushroom wholesaler & packager in the region - they supplied all of the mushrooms for Pizza Hut. He would give Deb a case of portobellas every now & then & she would cook 'em on the grill or stuff 'em with Maryland crab. Hmmm.... maybe I need to make a trip north.

  10. Incredible photos today. I always find different kinds of mushrooms growing in our woods and in my garden. I leave them be because they are charming, but I wish I knew if I could eat them.

  11. I don't know if you'd break away from "Wonders", but I tagged you on my blog :)

  12. I love mushrooms. Yum. But I think that particular Smurf is a referee, not a police smurf. I want to see a retraction in tomorrow's column. ;)

  13. Ha! You're right! And he's red carding some naughty player! Thanks Susan. But I won't be doing any retractions. What do you think I am, a journalist? :)

    It's interesting to me that people either love mushrooms or hate them. I was a senior in high school before I'd ever tasted one! My friend Debra made me a mushroom omelet, and I thought it was so exotic! Ha ha.
    But now one of my favorite sandwiches around features a grilled portobella. Yum! Jaxpop, you were a lucky man to get free ones! And your crab stuffed porto is making me drool! All we have for dinner is leftovers! You're so cruel!

    Green girl, you're probably smart to leave them alone. I've known people to get very sick from eating bad ones. And they are pretty in the woods!

  14. Sometime I would like to plant myself in front of one and watch it grow. They come up overnight.

  15. I love mushrooms! Lately I have been eating a lot of mushroom burgers...a veggie type of burger from Morningstar. Yummy!

    Whenever I see mushrooms in the wild, I always think of fairies!


  16. Oh yeah, I know what I was going to tell you before I read your post! I got those yo yo curtains at Wal-Mart, can you believe it? I love them in my bathroom.


  17. Oh man some of those photos were beautiful but I about screamed at L.T.E. until I read that it was a hoax!
    I mean scaffolding on your favorite monument is one thing but turning La Tour into a spaceship is ANOTHER!

  18. What's smurfing on here?
    Do you remember that line from the T.V show?

    What beautiful mushrooms. There is something so mysterious about them. The first ones pictured are magical!


  19. Loved this post. Thanks!!

    Hope you're having a great week.


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