In China they’re saying, among us is fungus—
This new one’s a record, a king of the giants!
It grew where a log was decaying, they’re saying,
And this is the largest recorded by science!
The years that it grew, maybe twenty, were plenty
To see that it reached its improbable size
Such wonderful things may be found all around us
Just all the more reason to open your eyes!
Via the BBC, a story on the world’s largest yet documented (I love that phrase–not “world’s largest” but “world’s largest yet documented”–it gives me the same feeling that pirate stories used to when I was a young cuttlesquirt, that there are wonders out there for those willing to look for them) fungus fruiting body, weighing in at half a ton.
It’s a bracket fungus (or shelf fungus); I had always heard that all bracket fungi were edible, but wiki tells me (I know, I know) that bracket fungi are grouped by appearance rather than phylogeny, so there is no guarantee that they have just found dinner for 2,500.