August 14 – Some days ago, Dale and I were sitting on the tail gate of the truck where we often rest up a bit before going back to the mowing or gardening. As I looked out on the pasture near the trail I saw something different, but it was too far away to be seen clearly. “Wanna go down with me to find out what those white things are?” I asked Dale. “No, you go and then come back and tell me!”“Well, aren’t you the ambitious one!” I answered. “OK, I’ll go to see for myself, but I may not share my find with you!” Laughing, Dale said, “Oh, yes, you will. You always have before!”
Quickly I walked down the hill, switched to the trail at the bottom, then hurried over to the “whatever they are” white things to take care of my inquisitive nature. OK, I knew immediately what they were because we had seen a couple in another part of our lawn the week before. Amanitas! Three of them all lined up in a row with the sun shining on them.
After taking a number of pictures, I went back to tell Dale all about how beautiful, but scary, those mushrooms were. As Google told me later, 98% of all deaths from eating mushrooms of any kind come from that family, with the all-white amanita being the deadliest of all.When I went down to the trail, I knew the amanitas were poisonous, but I didn’t realize that they were so bad. I don’t even plan to TOUCH one from here on in. In fact, when I wanted to get a better picture, having the three of them pretty well right in a row, I gently stuck my foot under the mushroom and slowly brought it back in line. Two nights later, as we walked our trail, we found that the amanitas were down flat on the grass; we weren’t sure if they had just fallen over, or if some creature had knocked them down.
A couple of days later, I made another quick trip to the mushroom area where I could see more of those amanitas and this time there were of them. One was much bigger than the other four, but all standing tall with little droplets on their surface. Several days later, just like the first group, those mushrooms just fell over and lay flat on the grass. At least I wasn’t at all tempted to touch them. – CHRIS