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Issue 37


March/April 2024

Greetings Enchanted Nature Community

Please enjoy our latest  issue of The Enchanted Nature Newsletter.

We hope that you are enjoying your spring season with excellent health, joy, and time spent with those you love.

Nature Has Sprung


“Nobody can discover the world for somebody else. Only when we discover it for ourselves does it become common ground and a common bond and we cease to be alone.”
― Wendell Berry, A Place on Earth

Greetings Enchanted Nature Community,

Spring is in full swing. Plants are putting on growth, pollinators are making use of an amazing pallet of springtime blooms and blossoms, and many of us are toiling to catch up on outdoor chores. We hope that you are taking some time to enjoy nature and finding enchantment. The world is and has always been full of disheartening problems. With the internet, twenty four hour news channels, and other media vying for our attention, the overload of frustrating situations in the world can be overwhelming. Try to find peace in the chaos. Simply watching a bee communing with a flower can take your mind away from daily stresses and encouraging a moment of presence and mindfulness. It can remind you of your connection to nature and promote a serene mental state.

From Our Readers

We truly appreciate your contributions!

You make The Enchanted Nature Newsletter more interesting for the community.

If any of you see anything enchanting in nature, take a picture and please send it along.


Don Depoy submitted the photo above. It appears to be an old mushroom in the Agaricus genus.

If you know this mushroom, let us know.


Eileen Feim sent us a couple of 'fun'gal pics for this newsletter. 

Above we have a crust fungus tucked into a lovely landscape of leaves and a Mountain Laurel.

Below we see a jelly fungus known as Orange Witch's Butter (Dacrymyces chrysospermus).

These are edible but do not have a strong flavor.

They take on the flavor of what they are cooked with.

If you enjoy hot and sour soup at your local Chinese restaurant,

the gelatinous texture of the broth is attributed to jelly fungus. 


Thank you both for your submissions! May the forest be with you.

Remember, if you can't get enough fungal fun,

Check out the weekly articles at the

Friends of Fungus-Fungus Among Us-page. 

Please send us your pics and queries: 

You can also text your pics & questions to (540) 324-8778.

From The Writers

Wine Cap (Stropharia rugosoannulata) mushrooms have been providing entertainment as well as delicious culinary delights.  This mushroom has many nutritional benefits and other beneficial health effects.

If you're interested in learning more about  the benefits of this mushroom:,associated%20with%20cancer%20%5B1%5D.

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Wine Cap 1.jpg

Let sleeping foxes lie...


Orchard Mason Bees

By: Christopher Vacher

Honeybees often take the spotlight but there are many other pollinators in nature. The honeybee is not native to North America and was brought by early colonists. Honeybees account for about 15 billion dollars in labor to our economy and are wonderful creatures but we want to shine a light on a lesser-know and under appreciated bee; the orchard mason bee.

Orchard mason bees,  Osmia spp., are exceptional pollinators for both home gardens and commercial orchards. Remarkably, a single orchard mason bee can pollinate up to 60,000 flowers during her lifetime. These bees are gentle and seldom sting, making them ideal for areas with close human proximity, such as urban gardens. They prefer to construct their nests in narrow spaces  like insect tunnels or cracks in wood, as long as the entrance is just slightly larger than their bodies. Although they are solitary by nature, they tend to nest in proximity to other bees of their species. We have been enjoying monitoring their progress in reproducing. In the short video below, you will see the females entering the tubes in our mason bee house. If they are entering head first, they are bringing mud to seal up the eggs. If they entering backwards, abdomen first, they are laying eggs. Mason bees lay their eggs, add some pollen, and then seal it in with mud as shown in the diagram.





















In areas where orchard mason bees are present but scarce, encouraging their population growth can be simple and fun. You can help by installing bee houses on your property. Mason bee houses can be purchased for a reasonable price or you can easily make your own. It can be as simple as drilling  5/16 to 3/8 of an inch holes of various sizes in a log.




Be sure that there is a supply of mud nearby. If you don't have a natural water feature nearby, mud is simple enough to make. 

This is a great project to work on with a youngster. If you don't get any mason bees in the first season, don't give up. Just put your bee hotel out early next spring. 


Enchanted Nature News

There is a lot happening in the Enchanted Nature ecosystem!

We are happy to announce that there will be a one day mushroom festival happening on Satuday, October 5, 2024 from 10am-5pm. 

You and your loved ones are warmly invited to experience the wonders of mushrooms and community spirit at the Enchanted Mushroom Festival.

It's an opportunity to learn, enjoy, and contribute to a cause that benefits both nature and our community. Let's come together to make this festival a memorable event for everyone involved. See you on October 5








Click the logo above for more info.

We are seeking vendors, food trucks, volunteers, donations, and entertainers.

If you are interested in being part of the festival, please contact us.


Enchanted Nature Mushroom Extracts are now available.

Our extracts can be purchased at:





Online sales through our website will begin mid May 2024

Just in time for Chanterelle season:

Our next mushroom class will be held on

Sunday, June 23rd, 11-3 at The Necessary Mercantile.



We will be teaching a mushroom masterclass at

The Norfolk Botanical Garden

Our next mushroom class will be held on

Saturday, July 27th, 9:30-1:30.

For more information click below:









Enchanted Nature Tours is being seen around the world. Virginia Tourism worked with an international marketing firm to create a series of videos that will be shown in airports. The company reached out to us for an interview. Keep in mind that were no scripts, no rehearsals and we had no editorial input on the piece. We met in the forest, answered a few questions and they cobbled together the video.














If you have any nature, gardening, or horticultural questions or comments, feel free to send them to


Watching Them Work

It is astounding how relaxing it can be to watch bees working on flowers.


Findings reported in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, suggest that keeping a few snapshots of greenery around yourself might be beneficial. When participants viewed the natural images in the experiment, their stress levels lowered, thanks to the activation of their parasympathetic nervous system – which controls certain rest functions. "Viewing green scenes may thus be particularly effective in supporting relaxation and recovery after experiencing a stressful period and thereby could serve as an opportunity for micro-restorative experiences and a promising tool in preventing chronic stress and stress-related diseases." Take a deep breath, hold it, and let it out slowly as you relax.


If you're ready to explore the forest, 

come out for an adventure with us 


There are many proven health benefits to spending time in nature. It has also been proven that just looking at images of nature can provide multiple health benefits including: reducing depression, speeding healing, improving your immune system, preventing dementia, improving your mood, and increasing happiness. We plan on ending each newsletter with a short video of a natural scene. Hopefully the videos will provide you with some of the benefits listed above.

Stay safe and enjoy nature

If you haven't taken the time to explore our website, please do.

There are a lot of free educational resources to enjoy


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with the word, "unsubscribe"

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