Mr. Bloomfield's Orchard: The Mysterious World of Mushrooms, Molds, and Mycologists

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OUP USA, Apr 22, 2004 - Nature - 224 pages
2 Reviews
Stinkhorns, puffballs, the "corpse finder," deadly Galerina, Satan's bolete, birch conks, black mold, the old man of the woods—the world of fungi is infinitely varied and not a little weird. Now, in Mr. Bloomfield's Orchard, Nicholas Money introduces readers to a dazzling array of fungi, from brewer's yeast and Penicillium to the highly lethal death cap. We learn of Madurella, which can erode bones until they look moth-eaten; Cordyceps, which wracks insects with convulsions, kills them, then sends a stalk out of the insect's head to release more infectious spores; and Claviceps, the poisonous ergot fungus, which causes hallucinations. Money also showcases the lives of famed mycologists—including Reginald Buller who wore horse blinders as he walked to work, the better to study luminescent fungi in his dark lab, and Charles Tulasne, the Audubon of fungi, whose illustrations of specimens border on art. And he recounts his own childhood introduction to fungi in Mr. Bloomfield's orchard, where trees and fruit were devoured by a rogue's gallery of bitter rot, canker, rust, powdery mildew, rubbery wood, and scab. Replete with historical photographs and simple yet effective illustrations, told with a refreshing sense of humor,Mr. Bloomfield's Orchard will fascinate anyone interested in the natural world.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Sandydog1 - LibraryThing

If I was a botany post-grad, I'd give this 5 stars. If I was a professor teaching the phyisiology and taxonomy of non-vascular plants, I'd assign this in a heartbeat. But for a general nature reader ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - hayleyscomet - LibraryThing

The book is basically a sweeping overview of the entire field of mycology, from the viewpoint of one researcher and mycophile. That is, he tells not only of the fungi he's seen, but of the other ... Read full review

Selected pages


Offensive Phalli and Frigid Caps
Insidious Killers
What Lies Beneath
The Odd Couple
Ingolds Jewels
Siren Songs
Angels of Death
Mr Bloomfields Orchard

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The Fungus Kingdom
Rebecca Stefoff
Limited preview - 2007

About the author (2004)

Nicholas P. Money is Professor of Botany and Western Program Director at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. He has studied fungal growth and reproduction for more than 30 years and has authored six books, including Mr. Bloomfield's Orchard: The Mysterious World of Mushrooms, Molds, and Mycologists (OUP, 2002), Mushroom (OUP, 2011) described by Nature magazine as a 'brilliant scientific and cultural exploration', and The Amoeba in the Room: Livesof the Microbes (OUP, 2014).

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