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Anyone who has ever seen Oyster Mushrooms will probably recall their unique habit of growing in a cascade along a tree trunk, in a upward or downward direction, depending one one's point of view. One mass of them I observed for several consecutive years grew on a dead or dying sycamore tree.
This is one mushroom, according to experts, that is almost impossible to confuse with any poison variety, however, I still do not recommend anyone gathering or collecting them based on an online mention. Always be certain of what you collect before ingesting it/them.
Many of us buy and eat "wild rice" which is not true rice, but certainly resembles it.
Zizania aquatica, or giant wild rice, can be grown if you have water that gets a regular new infusion of same, and if the water is approximately 1-3 feet deep.
The dandelion flush is in full swing this spring and there was one so large that I could not resist photographing it for others to see.
While it's true ALL dandelions are beautiful, this one's size caught my eye. Enjoy the pics and think about how misinformed all those homeowners are who call Chem-Lawn at the first sight of a few dandelions in their yards.
Nature cannot be beat.
One of the most common wild fruit trees in Missouri is the Wild Plum, of which there are five varieties. The most common and most widespread is the American Plum, Prunus americana Marsh. It is the largest and most important member of the plums as it is found rather generally throughout the state of Missouri, and is also found in Arkansas and elsewhere.
The other wild plum trees are the Chickasaw Plum, Prunus angustifolia Marsh., the Wild Goose Plum, Prunus munsoniana Wight and Hedr., Hortulan Plum, Prunus hortulana Bailey, and the Mexican Plum, Prunus mexicana.
If you have ever seen a wild persimmon tree (Diospyros virginiana L.) that is fully loaded with fruit, it is a sight to behold. These trees grow wild over much of the Ozarks and other areas as well. If left uncut and unpruned, a persimmon tree may reach great height, with few side branches. On the other hand, a persimmon tree that has been cut down after several years of growth, often regrows as a multi-branched tree, and these are often loaded with what appears to be thousands of fruits.
A common sight along roadside ditches, as well as in carefully tended residential flower gardens, is the Day Lily, known to the botanist as (Hemerocallis lilioasphodelus).
This time of year one can see along roadsides, in and on both public and private lands, a beautiful wildflower, commonly called Yucca, Adam's Needles, or Spanish Bayonet. It is Yucca filamentosa L. and every single part of the plant is said to be useful.
Long, green sword-like leaves 12-32" in length, 1-3.5" wide, comprise most of the green portion, while the flower stalk arises centrally, erupting in a tall and beautiful display of large white blossoms having plenty roomy for a bumblebee. The plant may reach 4-5' in height.
A truly delicious wild green, similar in taste to spinach or lambsquarter, was pointed out by a neighbor who has eaten it in season for as long as he can remember. It is called Shawnee. It is cooked in the same manner as spinach or lambsquarter, and the main difference in taste is more of a texture, as it is "grainier" than the other two, yet still delicious steamed with a little butter or olive oil.
One of the most delicious foods this writer knows is Lambsquarter, Chenopodium album L. This tasty green is related to spinach, beets, and Swiss chard, and compared to spinach, this one is tastier in the opinion of many.
For those who enjoy broccoli but are not fortunate enough to grow it, there is hope. There is a wild relative that goes by many names, one common one being Winter Cress. It is Barbarea vulgaris, and has both the dark green leaves reminiscent of true broccoli, plus it forms little "florets" or flower heads, or seed heads, that do resemble broccoli when it is at the harvest stage.