Thursday, 17 May 2012

King Stropharia Mushrooms, The Countryside Alliance Goes to Cardiff,

Just lately we have been experimenting with our friend G. The Mushroom Grower (http://www.maesymush.co.uk/) the cultivation of King Stropharia mushrooms. G. supplied the spore  which was 'sown' into a heap of straw and we waited to see what happened. We were all pleasantly surprised when a superb crop emerged. The picking of them is critical as once the caps have begun to flatten out they atre well past their best so a close eye has to be kept on them as they can change from ready to passed it in just a few hours. The cropping seemed to coincide with the full moon and we harvested about 6-7 kilos of mushrooms over three days which is remarkable. We are now waiting to see if thre will another crop with the next full moon. King Stropharia's taste very good with a flavour rather like hazelnuts, delicious fried in butter until going brown around the edges.

Yesterday the Farmer & I travelled to Cardiff to take part in an exhibition put on by the Countryside Alliance (http://www.countrysidealliance.org/) at the Senedd, the Welsh Assembly in Cardiff Bay. We had been invited as representatives of the Countryside Alliance Foundation to showcase the importance of Outdoor Education through our work with schools coming to see the farm. We spoke to a number of interesting & interested people (no Assembly Members though !) & it is encouraging that even though the politicians do not seem particularly interested in getting children out of the classroom & into the countryside many other people are.
The Countryside Alliance Director Sir Barney White-Spunner was there & the various aspects of country life were well represented by hounds from the Glamorgan pack with their huntsman & kennelman, falconers, fishermen, game shooting & general country activities. The atmosphere during the day was very good and there were no anti-hunting noises heard and the general public & the people at the Assembly were taking a keen interest in the subjects & issues raised by our presence in the building.
The day had been organised by the wonderful Rachel Evans who is the Countryside Alliance Director for Wales. She worked incredibly hard to get the whole event up & running and it all went extremely well.
We had a very enjoyable day despite having to cope with city traffic which we are no used to at all...we are such country mice!!!!

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