Cornell University

not fungi

Rhizopus: bad hair day

Postal conks

The best gifts keep on giving. This artist’s conk (Ganoderma applanatum) came to me by post. It turned out to be quite literally full of surprises. Eleven unexpected organisms popped out of it: one other fungus, and ten fascinating beetles. Also, and this was really quite satisfying: when it arrived, I knew I had won the argument.


Beware! The Slime Mold!

Our intrepid reporter studies the science behind the movie, The Blob, debunking Dr. Meddow’s longstanding theory that The Blob is a mutant bacterium from outer space. Warning: this post contains actual ooze, plus a song that, if you get it in your head, will haunt you for days.


Bioblitz Final Report

Back in 2007 I hosted a Bioblitz. Bioblitzes aim to inventory the organisms living on a patch of the planet. For fungi, this is frustratingly impossible.

Blogger bioblitz

Getting ready for the Bioblitz

A bioblitz near Ithaca, NY.

blogger bioblitz

First Annual Blogger Bioblitz in Ithaca

I ran a Bioblitz in Ithaca, New York.

CUP 25787

Something funny in the herbarium

You never know what you’ll stumble across in the herbarium. It’s a treasure trove of irreplaceable specimens, undescribed species, and occasionally, jokes.

protein synthesis

Protein synthesis in 1971

Hippies, protein synthesis, and Lewis Carroll, mixed together like some weird Jell-O mold. Too fascinating to look away.

A tribute to Carl Sagan

I’m fortunate to work in the same place Carl Sagan did. On the 10th anniversary of his death, a brief remembrance, and a celebration of a couple of other science communicators who influenced me.

club root

Cabbage monstrosities

The things that were once called Fungi but aren’t anymore are legion. Here’s one of them, a little swimmy thing that causes clubroot of cabbage. It gives cabbage monstrously clubbed roots, and as a bonus, acts as a vector for other diseases. Although we love its monstrous cruelty, we have banished it from the kingdom of Fungi. Be gone!


Most people don't pay much attention to fungi, which include things like mushrooms, molds, yeasts, and mildews. Here at Cornell we think they're pretty fascinating. In fact, even the most disgusting foot diseases and moldy strawberries are dear to our hearts. We'd like to talk to you about fungi, so that like us, you too can tell gross stories at the dinner table. Afterwards, maybe you'll notice some things you would have overlooked before, and we think this could be good for the planet.

Kathie T. Hodge, Editor

Beneath Notice, our book of borescopic mycology.


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