Summer honey agaric
This fragrant tender mushroom is familiar to many fans of the "silent hunt." It grows on dead wood, as if covering with a yellowish-golden hat, consisting of many separate mushrooms, stumps and fallen trunks of birch, alder, aspen. Summer mushrooms appear in June and do not go until September.
Honey agaric (Kuehneromyces mutabilis) is an edible fungus of the Strophariaceae family.
Description of summer honey fly
Summer honey agaric is widespread, with us it can be found almost everywhere where there is a forest. The mushroom cap is from 2 to 6 cm in diameter, flat-convex, with the edge down, and in the center - a wide-round protruding tubercle. Its color is rusty-yellow-brown with very characteristic concentric watery, lighter and even translucent stripes (circles). The pulp is thin, white. Leg 3.5–5 cm high and no more than 0.4 cm thick. On it is a ring of the same color as the hat. Sometimes it quickly disappears, but a clear trace remains in this place. Summer honey fly grows usually in large groups.
The mushroom is very tasty, has a delicate pulp and a strong aroma. They use it mainly in fresh form for preparing soups, roasts or for stewing. Preliminary boiling is not required. Hats can be dried. Legs are usually not eaten because of their stiffness. This mushroom is perishable, therefore, its quick processing is required.
False foal - “double” of summer honey
When collecting summer mushrooms, special attention should be paid to its plates. In summer honey agarics, they are first creamy, and then, when ripe, brown, in contrast to poisonous false mushrooms, in which the plates are first gray-yellow, and then dark - greenish or olive-brown.
Growing summer honey agaric on the site
Summer honey agaric is not subject to transportation, which prevents its industrial cultivation. But amateur mushroom growers, he would be interesting. Summer mushrooms have long been grown in Europe, where a specially prepared mushroom is used as planting material in the form of pasta in tubes, which is usually sold in stores selling vegetable seeds. In our country, such a paste is not produced, but do not despair. To plant a plantation, you can use the spores of the fungus in the form of the infusion of its mature hats in water or pieces of wood infected with the fungus.
Take mature hats with dark brown plates and place, after chopping them a little, in a container of water (preferably soft, rain) for 12-24 hours. Then strain through cheesecloth and pour the resulting infusion abundantly water stumps or pieces of wood with nicks made on their ends and sides. It is possible to decompose mature hats with the plates down for an additional 1-2 days on wood sprinkled with wood. Spores germinate slowly, and the first crop of mushrooms can be obtained only at the end of the next season or after 2 years.
Intensive infection occurs when using pieces of dilapidated wood penetrated by mycelium. Such wood can be found in the forest in June. It is harvested from stumps, on which at this time there are fruit bodies of summer honey. Pieces of wood should be taken from the zone of active growth of the mycelium, which is determined by the abundance of white or cream threads and a strong mushroom smell. Then they are placed in holes and notches made on stumps or pieces of wood, and covered with moss, shingles, bark, etc. Pieces can be attached to the surface of stumps or round timber with the help of carnations. With this method of infection, the first mushrooms can be expected at the beginning of next summer.
Wood of any hardwood species is suitable for growing summer mushrooms, but birch is most suitable. After chopping, it contains a sufficient amount of moisture, and birch bark well protects it from drying out. Alder, aspen, and poplar wood are also suitable. The mushroom grows worse on coniferous species (pine, spruce).
Usually, lengths of 30–35 cm are made of any diameter. You can use stumps from old fruit trees, which, by the way, will completely collapse in 4-6 years. If stumps or wood are freshly chopped, then infection can be done without special preparation, and soak dried up in water for 1-2 days (stumps are watered).
Infection can be done throughout the growing season, but not in hot, dry weather. However, the best time is considered spring and early autumn.
Infected pieces of wood are placed vertically in fresh pits at a distance of 0.5 m from each other so that about 15 cm remains above the soil surface. The soil on the plot is moistened and mulched with sawdust. It is best to place such plots in shaded places, such as under a canopy of trees or in a special shelter. Greenhouses and hotbeds are also suitable for this purpose, where humidity can be regulated. Under these conditions, fungi sometimes appear 7 months after planting. Fruiting usually occurs twice - at the beginning of summer and in the fall and can last on segments of wood with a diameter of 20-30 cm for 5-7 years, on larger ones - longer.
The yield of summer honey agaric depends on wood, weather conditions, the degree of growth of mycelium and can vary greatly: from 30 g of fresh mushrooms per year from one piece of wood to 6 kg from the same surface only for summer fruiting. It should be noted that usually the first fruiting is not plentiful.
Summer honey agaric can be grown on wood waste (thin trunks, branches). They are collected in bunches with a diameter of 10-25 cm and after infection by any of the methods described above, they are buried in soil to a depth of 20-25 cm, covered with turf on top. The plot should be protected from wind and sun.
Summer honey agaric is not dangerous for fruit trees, as it grows only on dead wood.