regnum-plantae: Auricularia auricula-judae It’…

regnum-plantae:

Auricularia auricula-judae

It’s almost fall, but you can see in the background of these pictures this is a throwback to when it was almost spring…I am not really looking forward to a long and dark Scottish winter, but I could have it worse after all. 

This interestingly looking fungus is known as wood ear or jelly ear due to its convoluted shape and jelly-like consistency. Distributed worldwide in temperate areas, it can be found year round and grows particularly on elder (Sambucus) trees -indeed, I found the colony in the photos on a dead Sambucus nigra. Although it has never really been part of the culinary tradition of the West, it is edible and widely consumed in Asia, while everybody seemed to use it in a variety of ways for its medicinal properties.