A horse mushroom in its prime is a thing of great beauty and superb flavour. It also has the curious dual distinction of being commonly misidentified and widely underrated.
Sweet cicely offers many sensual pleasures to the forager. There is an ampleness and generosity in her growth that is pleasing to the eye – seldom taller than a metre or so, but always appearing substantial without being solid. Despite being a member of the often scary carrot family, this gorgeous plant is one I recommend to novice foragers.
Though not strong in flavour and a little flimsy of texture, these mushrooms are well worth picking for their beautiful colour, which is even more striking in a basket next to chanterelles – which they can often be found growing alongside.
This is the prettiest and most fragrant of all hedgerow plants, its creamy yellow clouds of tiny flowers (I call them ditch-floss) spreading honey and almond summery scents about the countryside…
Giant puffballs are a joy to stumble upon. Actively hunting for them can be a waste of time as they are eccentric in when and where they grow. Smaller types of puffballs turn up on most forays.