Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Mystery Solved, Garden, & Speaking The Truth

Last night, while watering my onions in their raised garden bed, I noticed what appeared to be an egg.  You heard right…..an egg!!!!   I directed the hose head toward the egg, to rinse the thin layer of soil off the top of this egg. 

I thought to myself, “what type of critter would lay an egg in a garden and cover it with a thin layer of soil…………………I know, I know………….a SNAKE egg!!!!”   I thought this, because, we’ve had copperhead snakes in the garden, in the past.

Think again; snakes, when laying eggs, will lay a clutch (multiple together in the same area), and will cover the eggs with loose soil or sand.   
After removing the loose soil on top of the egg with water, I picked up my hand shovel and scooped up this egg, called for Bulldog Man to come outside and investigate this egg. 

Bulldog Man picked up the egg with the shovel, and tossed it in our outside trash.  He said whatever was inside has to be dead.  The shell on the egg was cracked open and the mucus membrane was oozing out. 

Now being the inquisitive person I am, I thought about this egg all night long.  Once Bulldog Man left for work, I went outside, put my gloves on, grabbed my hand held garden shovel, and went to retrieve this egg.

The egg was no longer a formed egg.  It was totally cracked open, the shell of the egg was in one section of the trash can, and the strange looking critter was on the other side. 

I pulled out both the critter and egg shell to determine what we were dealing with.

I never seen anything like it before.

Come to find out, it was a Netted Stinkhorn…………..a mushroom!!!!

The actual egg looked like a hardboiled egg, the size of a goose egg.
Around the crack on the egg was a clear/yellowish film, which looked like a membrane.

Here is a picture of the cracked egg, and Netted Stinkhorn mushroom I found.
The cracked shell.

The mushroom broken.

I’ve also attached a You Tube time lapsed video from American Mushroom.com. 

This is the first time I have ever seen such a mushroom.  It’s my understanding, after researching this mushroom; it was named the Netted Stinkhorn because it puts off a terrible smell which in turn attracts flies.  Apparently, the outside temperature was too cool therefore the mushroom didn’t put off its terrible scent (stink).

Due to all the water we received, the moisture levels were high, in turn, producing all kinds of mushrooms throughout my garden.  This was a first though, for the Netted Stinkhorn.

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Speaking of moisture, here’s a look at the damage I created while trying to cut the grass.  Areas of our grass on the property absorbed the water, while in other areas, the water sat. 

While driving and looking in one direction to miss sitting water and destroying the grass, I found myself and the tractor stuck in mud.  It took me about 20 minutes to get the lawn tractor out of the mud by pushing it.  When finished pushing; my shoes and clothing were caked in mud.


*****
Every couple of days I place new homemade humming bird nectar in the bird feeders.  So far, we haven’t had one humming bird.  We do however, attract the occasional bee or hornet.



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Garden News/Updates 
Even though my green beans were battered from the storms, I didn’t pull them out of the garden for replanting.  I just left them in, and now you can see several beans appearing on the vines. 



My jalapenos, planted in 5 gallon buckets, have flowers blooming on them in preparation of peppers.


The celery ends planted in the ground 2 months back took a hit with water and bugs, only one survived out of 3.  The red cabbage seems to really be coming along, even after the water and leaf-eating bugs.  I continue to spray the leaves (with a water, dawn soap, and alcohol concoction) and recently cut off the outer bug destroyed leaves.  I will say this is a first for cabbage in my garden.

Two years in a row I planted cabbage seeds, and had no luck. This year, I planted healthy looking seedlings picked up from Atwood’s Ranch store and they’re holding their own. 



I added a few more cucumber seeds to these pots, because several of the seedlings ended up getting water logged from the storms.  They seem to be doing pretty good now.  Hopefully in the next 2 weeks, they’ll start climbing the trellis.



My tomato plants have really taken off.  They seem to really like the Okie drip system I installed.  To find out more about that system, go here.  Bulldog Man and I recently trimmed the branches affected by our recent storms.

















During our 2 weeks of storms, the tops of my onions were shredded and destroyed (not all but most).  Bulldog Man and I clipped off the shredded and dead parts and now we have new green tops (green onions) and they’re looking really healthy.

On a sad note, the storms ended up killing off my Yukon potatoes.  There was just too much water.  I pulled up all the potato plants from my tires, and harvested what good potatoes were left, making sure to discard the dead potato plants and water logged potatoes.


Each tire was cleaned out and prepped to replant a new variety of potato in the next several days. 

Out of two containers full of sunflower seeds planted, only a handful lived through the storms.  Yesterday, I planted 2 more packets of sunflower seeds to fill in the areas where I originally lost flowers.

Sunflower and a little mushroom next to it.

A notation regarding health…………with all this sitting water from the recent storms rolling through, we have found mosquitoes rapidly breeding.  There have been several cases of meningitis found in the state of Oklahoma.  If you have sitting water and want to prevent a mosquito problem, try to get rid of the sitting water.
Clip Art From Letscoloringpages.com


*****
Several months back, I purchased a used stove top steamer at a yard sale/estate sale.  I was told by a friend (who will remain nameless) this steamer was a piece of trash, and I should have never purchased it. 

I‘ll have you know after thoroughly cleaning, and sterilizing this steamer it works wonderfully, and I’ve used it numerous times. Here’s evidence the steamer works good. 


Steaming Tamales

By the way, I can use my steamer on an electric stove, gas stove, or campfire; whereas yours can only be plugged into the wall.  My steamer cost me $4.33, yours $89.00 plus the cost of using electric.  So tell me, dear friend, whose steamer is a costly piece of trash now??

No digs……just speaking the truth.


Tell me Blogger friends, do you have a piece of trash you would like to share?

22 comments:

  1. I had a piece of trash that got shared whether I wanted it or not. Finally I divorced it.

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    1. PP,

      Oh Dear!!! That's what I call too much sharing!!!

      Delete
  2. I have never heard of a mushroom that hatches open like an egg! My goodness this is an amazing world we live in...And I'm just so glad to hear it wasn't a snake egg.
    I happy for you that you have gotten a good deal on your steamer. I am trying to find non-electric cooking tools too. I have bought a lot of cheap trash lately. Sometimes I go for months without buying anything, but lately I've found all kinds of goodies.
    BTW, you be careful pushing that tractor or you'll end up in bed with a bad back!!!

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    1. Kimberly,

      The same here girl, it was a first for me too! I had to research it, I truly thought it was a snake egg. Thank God it wasn't a snake egg.

      Anything functional and non-electric for the kitchen when I come across it I try to purchase it if it's something I need. How many times will you come across true items non-electric for the kitchen? Not many times!!!

      I will make sure to be careful pushing the tractor because I already have back problems. Thanks sweetie, enjoy your week!!!

      Delete
  3. Love that steamer! I would't have passed that up either! OMG sounds like you and I had a similar weekend. I got our zen machine stuck, and had to push it out, got covered in mud...sigh. Then the mosquitoes attacked...

    But hey, a whole 5 days so far without rain, should be a good weekend in the yard, hot, but I'll take it!!

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    Replies
    1. 1st Man,

      Me too!!! I try not to pass up good deals on stuff I need for my kitchen, bugging out, or for camping. We sure did have the same type of weekend with pushing out our Zen machines, too much water, and mud too.
      The mosquitoes are terrible right now, they say to spray yourself with deet......I try to take a natural route to stop those blood suckers.

      Not having rain right now is just awesome, I do worry though about too much heat. Remember to use your sun screen when out........we don't want burns!!!

      Delete
  4. I have "eggs" like that in my garden, too. And I thought, when I first discovered them that they were turtle eggs. They make ugly red "horn-looking" things with brown slime on the tip, and are called "Elegant Stinkhorn". I have read that we don't normally get those in Oklahoma. But I mulch with wood chips, from a local tree-trimmer, and that has a lot to do with it. Now when I find them, I throw them out into the walkways. They gather around the base of plants and I'm not sure that's such a good thing.

    I grow Copenhagen Market cabbage and it always does well for me. I start the seeds in the house in January. Getting three- to four-pound cabbages but they are being attacked by the insects and all this rain, followed now by warm sunny days is making some of them split. I've got a new post on my blog about what I'm doing with all of them, come on over if you can.

    I actually have the top part of your steamer that I bought at a garage sale. I liked its shape. It fits on top of one of my regular pans and I have used it a few times. One woman's trash is another's treasure. Heh.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. IIene,

      Good morning friendly Oklahoman, the Stinkhorn mushrooms are not common here in Oklahoma. Mulch and wood chips along with all kinds of water have a lot to do with the producing of these awful smelling, ugly mushrooms. When you scoop them out, you need to take a good chunk of the dirt. If you don't then spores are left behind. Which means you'll have a family of these awful mushrooms growing. I made make sure I wore gloves, used a shovel, and place it in a garbage bag. Even after when I pulled it back out of the bag, I made sure I cut it in a place where no vegetables or fruit grow......oddly enough they're people who will eat these mushrooms in Asia.
      They're not my cup of tea :-)

      Since having all the rain, I've noticed all kinds of bug and rolly polly's myself. I've been using a homemade concoction to help get rid of them on the leaves of my plants. Try tossing over ripe fruit, like strawberries on the ground near the rolly polly's and leave them over night (maybe several nights). You'll notice the rolly polly's will flock to the fruit, then just lift the strawberry with the rolly polly's out with a shovel and toss in the trash. Sometimes this helps attract those little bugs away from your plants.

      Agreed, one woman's trash is another's treasure :-)

      Delete
  5. No, Sandy, I want to keep all of my trash for myself! (-: Non-electric is the way to go. Good for you.

    I enjoyed the garden tour and learning about a weird mushroom. I found blooms on our green beans yesterday, but my cabbage isn't doing as well as yours. All but a few of our onions rotted in the ground from all of the rain. It's interesting that the tomatoes are doing so well, both yours and ours. Our plants this year are very sturdy, healthy and are now blooming. The okra I planted twice was either washed away or drowned. I hope to replant more today. It's late, but it will still have plenty of time to make. We're looking forward to fresh squash in a day or two. Life is returning to the garden and we are very glad.

    Fern

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    Replies
    1. Hey Fern,

      Yes Ma'am, any non-electric tool for the kitchen is a good thing!!!

      Thank you, isn't that mushroom different? I've never seen one of these mushrooms before. I've learned so much about the soil and country living in Oklahoma.

      Our green beans have really taken off since having all that rain, I was totally surprised the beans didn't die off from all the water, the same goes with our tomatoes. It will be interesting to see how many tomatoes both you and I harvest this year compared to last year. This is the first year where my cabbage is doing well. The last 2 years, I planted from seed, and the cabbage did terrible, and was eaten up by some bug.

      I'm waiting on harvesting my onions until the tops start dying off. Hopefully when I go to harvest them I won't find a surprise of rotting onions from the rains.

      The water more than likely washed your okra seeds away. I know you'll have a great harvest of okra once you've replanted. The same will go with my potatoes, lettuce, spinach, and carrots.

      I hope you do a post on your squash. I haven't planted squash yet, and will be happy to take in any advice you have about planting it.

      Having a garden works toward making our lives more self reliant, and healthier. It provides us with an inner peace, and in the end we also save money. Life is good!!!

      Delete
  6. Oh my, I love tamales, but I've never tried to make my own. That said, your steamer is fantastic. That's the kind I will look for.

    The part about the egg mushroom was great! It is interesting to note how vastly the weather can change the face of a garden and what's going on in it. Even the type of weeds one sees. All in all things in your garden look pretty good Sandy.

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    Replies
    1. Hey There Leigh,
      I love tamales too!!! Making them is very time consuming. This steamer was a great find, I was surprised when I walked into the sale and found it sitting right in front of me. I snatched it up so no one else could, then walked around looking for more non-electric goodies for my kitchen.

      This strange mushroom egg was a weird to find, I actually thought it was an onion without a top when I first took sight of it. Through further investigation, I realized it was some sort of egg, and hoped it was not a snake egg.
      I'm learning new things daily around here.

      I have to agree with you, the weather across this country changes constantly blowing in new weeds, spores, seeds, and strange objects.

      Thank you for your nice comment about my garden, I'm trying very hard to have a garden that will provide a large amount of our vegetables for Bulldog Man, Tank, and myself this next year. It's been hard work but well worth it!

      Delete
  7. What an interesting, informative post! You are to be given a lot of credit for all the extra, repetitive work you've had to do on your garden this year because of Mother Nature being cranky.

    I'm probably about the least "kitchen gadget" person you'll ever meet. Give me a good supply of wooden spoons and I don't need or want much else. ;o] Your steamer was a great find. Most folks only see dirt and grime when they look at something "old" like that. A bit of your elbow grease and look at the gem you now own!

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    1. Hey Mama Pea,

      Thank you!! Mother Nature just kicked our butts down here with destroying the garden.....but that's okay. I'm determined to replant and get some great harvests this year.

      The steamer was just old but in good condition, no dirt because the older woman would use it all the time to cook. I was so happy to find it because it wasn't electric :-) A little elbow grease, and it's like new :-)

      Delete
  8. Sandy, The garden looks great despite all the bad weather that hit you guys. Don't you just hate getting stuck & rutting up an area? It never seems to level out properly. b-t-w ... I love that steamer (& the tamales inside don't look half bad either!). Glad that egg turned out to be a mushroom instead of a snake egg!

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    1. DFW,

      My garden is finally coming around after replanting most of what I had previously planted. Yes, I hate making a mess in the grass because I have to repair it, and make it look the way it used to look. The steamer was a great find, and I use it often. I'm so happy the egg was not a snake egg.

      Delete
  9. Sweet Sandy - your garden looks fantastic and is evidence of your tenacious hard work! you will be able to put up a bunch of food to feed your family this year! as for your steamer - gurl - that's a serious score!!! you and jam both have "the eye" for finding stuff that other people would think was garbage. as for that mushroom - i have never seen that before but i guess with all of the crazy weather you've been having that the spores have had just the right conditions to bloom into a mushroom. Ed (from Riverbend Journal) goes out every year to get morels. i love morels but i don't think there are any around here. i am really glad that it was just a mushroom and not a snake egg. we have eastern red-bellied snakes here and we love them because they eat slugs. but we have no poisonous snakes here - thank goodness!

    okay - well that is enough blathering from me except to say - tell it like it is sister! you got a great deal with that steamer and if someone told you it was crap - well, they made a mistake and were wrong. sending much love to all of you, as always! your friend,
    kymber

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    1. Sweet Kymber,

      My garden has become a full time job for me this year with having to replant it.
      Yes, our plans are to harvest as much as possible out of the garden to feed and put away this year. Finding deals takes patients, hard work, and determination. When I set my eye on something, I already know what I'm going to do with it and hurry up and snatch it up before someone else takes it. To bad for those who can't stand to recycle items!!!!

      This is a first for me seeing such a mushroom......and for it to come out of and egg.....talk about crazy, lol.......
      Morels are my favorite mushroom, we used to go out when living up north and hunt for them. Always coming back with a basket full.

      Sending love and hugs to you and Jam
      Sandy

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  10. Nature is fascinating! Who would have guessed it was a mushroom! Glad you didn't lose everything during the storms and rain - and I love trash/treasures! I agree - non-electric is the way to go!

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    1. Susan,

      Nature is very fascinating. I would have never guessed the egg held a mushroom. Talk about a surprise!!! Treasures are wonderful finds!!!

      Delete
  11. Oh Sandy you could be a dear and mail me some of those tamales!! My Absolute Fav!!
    Pish Posh on the person who told ya it was garbage..... turns out to be a treasure!
    The garden is looking great! Now if the weather will cooperate

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  12. It's been a long time and I thought I would stop and say Hello! If you don't want me here, just say so!

    ReplyDelete