“Helppppp! My mushroom! It is disappearing into a big fat giant slug!“
This particular slug probably had a circus background and was either very hungry and/or had a taste for delicatessen products. Hats off to its trapeze act balancing on the wire but that was certainly not what it was supposed to do. In a previous news item (see “Hanging Mushrooms” 28/02/2023) I explained this experiment of producing mushrooms in a way that is out of reach from snails and slugs. All of the crates used were hung by straps from a horizontal log and one side was tied to a nearby tree with reinforced fencing wire for extra stability. No contact with the ground. These crates were inoculated in February this year with garden giant / stropharia spawn and this was the first decent harvest. Underneath the crate in the photo, the ground was awash with giant orange swelly bellies, some were slowly moving but most of them were most likely in delicatessen dreamland waiting their turn to try to walk/ slime(?) the wire.
From the 11 still hanging crates (1 fell apart and doens’t count) 4 have produced garden giant / stropharia mushrooms and it looks like that a couple more are active as well. No damage from snails and slugs except for the one mushroom in the photo. Good enough to continue the experiment next year!