The incredible properties of mushrooms are being unearthed by mycologists with wide-ranging benefits in various fields from packaging to antibiotics, biofuels to ecological pesticides.
In 2006, a patent was granted to mycologist, Paul Stamets. The patent is perhaps the biggest threat the chemical pesticide industry has ever encountered and this is only one of a string of patents Paul has to his name.
Continue reading The Magic of Mushrooms
This interview by Richard Schiffman with Hollyhock Presenter Paul Stamets was originally published in The New Scientist, February 2016. Paul will be presenting Mushrooms: Wild & Mysterious at Hollyhock on Oct 23 -27, 2016
Tell me about the hat you’re wearing.
It’s made from a birch polypore mushroom. Our ancestors realized that you could get this tough bracket fungus off birch trees, hollow it out and put fire in it and carry it for days. This enabled the portability of fire that is so critical for human survival. When the same mushroom is boiled and stretched, it produces a fabric. There are only a handful of people in Transylvania who are making these hats now. Because of deforestation and the difficulty of finding large-enough mushrooms, the hats are becoming very rare.
Continue reading We’re Sitting on a Mould Mine
Honeybees need a healthy diet of pollen, nectar and water. But at a bee laboratory in Eastern Washington, Steve Sheppard fills their feeding tubes with murky brown liquid from the forest.
His bees are getting a healthy dose of mushroom juice.
“If this does what we hope, it will be truly revolutionary,” said Sheppard, who heads the Department of Entomology at Washington State University. “Beekeepers are running out of options.”
Commercial honeybees, which pollinate $15 billion worth of crops in the United States annually, have teetered on the brink of collapse for nearly a decade. A third of all bee colonies have died each year since 2006, on average, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Scientists say the mysterious phenomenon, known as colony collapse disorder, may be the result of at least 60 environmental factors that combine to cripple honeybees — including pesticides, disease, malnutrition, loss of habitat and climate change. Continue reading Could A Mushroom Save The Honeybee?
Content Source: Fungi.com
Featured Image Source: The Evergreen Magazine
Paul Stamets D.Sc. (Hon.), Founder and President of Fungi Perfecti LLC and Host Defense, is the first-ever recipient of the Mycological Society of America’s Gordon and Tina Wasson Award. Named after the late preeminent ethnomycologists, the award is intended “to recognize people with non-traditional academic backgrounds who have made outstanding contributions to the field of mycology, or who have widely transmitted significant scientific or aesthetic knowledge about fungi to the general public.” More information can be found in the July 2015 issue of Inoculum, newsletter of the Mycological Society of America.
“In summary Paul Stamets is a highly original, self-trained member of the mycological community who has had a huge and sustained impact on the field of Mycology. Awarding the first Wasson award to him sets a high bar for the future. It also allows us to recognize a member of our field that the general public and AAAS have already identified as a leader and spokesperson. Sincere congratulations are due to Paul!” Continue reading Paul Receives the Gordon and Tina Wasson Award
Paul Stamets just wrapped a packed program at Hollyhock this fall. His knowledge and positivity are a privilege to host.