April 29, 2009

Lepiota lutea (Yellow Parasol Houseplant Mushroom) & our Mysterious Houseplant

Here's an expurgated e-mail from Miss Cosmo Wernicky from late February 2009, when she first disappeared towards Bubidad, Hindoostan.

fromCosmo Wernicky ______@gmail.com
to"J. Welsch"_@itwaslost.org,
"Jenny Ruth" _______@yahoo.com
dateMon, Feb 23, 2009 at 3:55 AM
subjectRe: Alaine along the riverrun

My dear J.'s,
Do forgive me for writing to you both at the same time; my cyber time has been rather limited by the habit of the B____ to monitor my every move and by the constraints posed on computer use by intermittent availability of electricity in this land of the Hindoos.
Anyway, I miss you both a lot. Happy Birthday J. Craw.
J.--how comes the peace corp process?
J.-I'm most glad to hear about the mushrooms. I recall observing many species of mushrooming up in potted plants during my sojourn at Plant It Earth, notably Lepiota lutea, a lovely yellow variety some may refer to as "yellow penis mushroom mushroom."
well, I'm going to drop a quick line to mary now. I do love you all.
She had given to our Berkeley flat a mysterious houseplant, photographed here decorated for Christmas:

It has since grown about three times as many leaves. (I started watering it daily.) This spring, it began to grow large strange yellow mushrooms. Google searches corroborate it as the Lepiota lutea, or yellow parasol mushroom, which appear more often if organic compost has been used. They grew in several cycles. Each cycle would end with fewer & larger parasol mushrooms, culminating in the masterpiece I am looking at in this photograph:

The era of the Yellow Penis Mushrooms has passed. I expect them early next spring. If anyone can identify the mysterious houseplant she gave us, I think it is in the Erythroxylaceae, altho not Erythroxylum coca of cocaine fame.


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1 comment:

Olaf Mary said...

well done! excellent adherence to our board meeting regarding your inclusion of Cosmo P. Beautiful Pictures! Beautiful Fungus!