Friday, 25 November 2016

Geoglossum cookeianum - Black Earth Tongue

Geoglossum cookeianum - Black Earth Tongue

This time last year I took a break on the East Coast of England, Norfolk.
I downed tools from writing the Field Guide to the Mushrooms of Britain and Europe and spent 5 days wandering around the deserted beaches and woodland in East Anglia.  
Therapeutic it was too.  Decent weather and light and I managed to find a few new mushrooms to photograph.  One of them being Black Earth Tongue.

This grows mostly in coastal regions amongst sandy soil and in short grass.  I nearly missed it.  Despite being black it is not easy to spot and could easily be mistaken for dried seaweed.

Description: up to 7 cm tall and 2 cm wide.  Dull black, elongated tongue-shaped and smooth with a blunt and curved tip. The stem is very short. The more dry the weather the more brittle the texture.  It was growing in small groups in short grass in sandy soil.  To be found usually May - November.  It is uncommon.

It rather fascinated me.  An all black fungus with a nice shape and my first find in a decade of searching.  Not a disappointment.  This was found at a location called Snettisham Scalp.

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