Good news.....we have solved the mystery fungi that I put up on the blog yesterday!
After reading several books and scouring the internet we have identified the mystery fungus on the Oak Tree as Fistulina hepatica, or as it's more commonly known Beefsteak Fungus. It is called Beefsteak Fungus due to the fact that it looks like raw meat and when it's cut open or prodded it "bleeds."
Beefsteak Fungus is classed as an edible species although I have never tried it as it's always hit and miss as to which fungi are the poisonous ones and which one can be eaten, but I have been told that it doesn't taste like beef and is rather tough and bitter.
Fistulina hepatica is an annual fungi that is usually found around the base of living Oaks and Sweet Chestnut Trees during the autumn when the weather can be mild and damp which is why our Fungus has appeared over the past week or two. They can grow to around 10-25cm across and be up to 6cm thick.
The Beefsteak Fungus is an indication that the is internal decay occuring inside the tree which over time can weaken the tree and cause it to become damaged in high winds. This will mean that because we know the tree has potential problems and is in a prominent position within the garden we will carry out an asessments on it every 6 months to assess the condition of it and do all we can to ensure that is safe.
Quotes of the weekend...
Pat who is one of our Garden Guides has collected several comment cards from our visitors in the garden today so I thought I would share a few with you.....
"Very very good, the kids loved it"
"This is a delightful garden, beautifully kept. Thank you"
"What a Joy! Perfect garden, Wonderful Weather,so great to enjoy all the hard work without doing any ourselves!"