August 18th. (Continued from…). I started to walk again at Fort Yargo State Park in Winder, Georgia. One of my favorite walks is from the Group Shelter A to the Old Fort and back.This is a rewarding walk for viewing wildflowers and I’ve This is a rewarding walk for viewing wildflowers and I’ve been walking it every week and documenting the wildflowers that I see.
The early spring wildflowers have finished blooming; it’s time to watch the developing fruit. Summer wildflowers were still blooming but it was time to turn attention to the fungi in the woods.
The fruit on the Buttonbush (Cephalanthus occidentalis) were unchanged from the previous week. But I got a surprise while I was looking at the bush; three surprises to be precise.
A Carolina Anole (Anolis carolinensis), a…
Chinese Mantis (Tenodera sinensis), and a…
Black and Yellow Garden Spider (Argiope aurantia) were all hunting in their own ‘corner’ of the bush.
I was surprised to see a Common Button Lichen (Buellia erubescens) fruiting on a tree near the ‘Rock Garden;’ it seemed a little early for lichens to be fruiting.
The seed capsules on the Wild Yam (Dioscorea villosa) had lightened in color. They weren’t turning brown but it was possible to see the outline of the seeds in the capsule.
The Resurrection Fern (Pleopeltis polypodioides) was still green after the recent rain.
The fruit on the Eastern Sweetshrub (Calycanthus floridus) in the Rock Garden had turned completely brown - finally.
It’s unusual to find Hairy Elephantfoot (Elephantopus tomentosus) in this section of the woods but I found one blooming there.
Periodically, after rains, I had found Snow Fungus (Tremella fuciformis) on several logs between the end of the Rock Garden trail and the open area below the Old Fort.
This was a ‘first.’ I wasn’t used to seeing Witch’s Butter (Tremella mesenterica) on this trail. This was a particularly beautiful specimen. Even more interesting was the ‘powdery’ surface on a section that was indicative of sporing; I’d never seen this before.
I walked down to the Swamp Rosemallow (Hibiscus moscheutos). In the dry weather, the capsules were open. On this visit, the…
capsules had ‘closed,’ apparently against the wet weather.
Groundnut (Apios americana) vines were still blooming next to the rosemallow bush.
Along the lake shore between the rosemallow and the woods, I found…
Water Hemlock (Circuta maculata), and…
Bushy Seedbox (Ludwigia alternifolia) blooming.
The final find on this walk was particularly exciting. I had read about these fungi but never thought I’d see one. This is the Golden Reishi (Ganoderma curtisii) – thanks to Matt Schink in the Facebook Mushroom Identification Forum for this identification - that is associated with hardwoods, and distributed mainly in the Southeastern United States.
As with many other walks on this trail; when I think I’ve seen everything, I see something new and exciting.