Rains – Autumn of 2012

The retreating south west monsoon, and the north-east monsoon, which set immediately afterwards, brought welcome relief to many places in Tamil Nadu. It didn’t make anyone, especially farmers, water-wise. I’m not referring to the latest, fancy drip-irrigation equipment, but the more simpler, and effective water harvesting, either traditional or permaculture swales.

Out at the farm, in the lemon orchard, which is not sprayed, or plowed, different types of mushrooms appear magically, including the unusual yellow jelly mushroom (Tramella sp.)

Yellow Jelly Mushroom (Tramella sp.)

Several types of puffballs abound, some pure white, some yellow, either smooth,  with ridges, or spikes.

There is the Ganoderma mushroom, that is highly valued for its medicinal properties. Although locally it is just treated as an yet another inedible mushroom. The red stalk is not visible in this photo.

And we have a few more varieties, some conical, and some with flattened caps, none of them look edible. The one edible variety that is sought after, will probably require a few more rains. It is big, white, breaks through bare earth, unlike the ones you see here, which are associated with dead tree branches, or leaf litter.


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