Knit 52 Kinds of Mushrooms in Glowing Colours

credit: BromeLeighad

Knitting and mushrooms isn't a combination that springs to mind instantly, but once you start to look at these creations you too will be hooked. Leigh Martin, an avid knitter from Oklahoma, set herself a challenge last year: knit a different fungi every week.

credit: BromeLeighad

It's a journey; not all of the mushrooms were found in situ, many she copied from images in books. But she has taken the time to examine the history, wool and colours used and her personal story of each one. For example:

This mushroom holds a special place in my heart. While I have no idea what species it is, this is a replica of one of my favorite mushrooms that I encountered on my visit to the Pacific Northwest last summer. We were on a coastal trail surrounded by ferns and, well, mosquitos, and there was an eerie darkness under the trees near the creek bank where it was found.
credit: BromeLeighad

As Martin explains:

Trees, nature, and fiber are my greatest loves. Knitting has become one of my greatest retreats, releases and creative impulses, and it is only fitting that I combined this with my passion for seeking out the intricate details of the natural world, to contemplate in awe just how wildly complex every piece of nature really is.
For the record, this one is Lactarius indigo, which is great mushroom for natural dyeing-- it exudes a dark blue milky substance when cut.
credit: BromeLeighad

These Parrot fungi are so cheery. They were found in an Audubon mushrooms field guide. Apparently they are edible and grow near conifers across North America.

credit: BromeLeighad

These are rather dark and threatening... Number 14, found in the woods outside a cabin in southeast Oklahoma. Called Devil's Urn, it is one of the very first species to appear in springtime as the forest comes back to life after winter. They have a brown exterior and a smooth black interior and are found on felled tree branches.

credit: BromeLeighad

This one--the turkey tail fungus took several weeks to create due to the different shades and patterns on it.

credit: BromeLeighad

This bizarre looking fungi, the Aseroe rubra, or anemone stinkhorn, grows in the tropics as well as South Carolina where it has apparently been introduced.

credit: BromeLeighad

Some of these wonderful creations are available in the knitter's Etsy shop. You can buy this adorable Jack O' Lantern fungus knitted with love from 100% wool yarn.