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Aaaaaages ago, in fact, just on thirteen months ago, I posted about how I get a bit panicky when February’s cruel, dry weather rolls around again. This year has been no different, with February going out with a bang here in Perth, logging some seriously hot weather so that no one forgets who’s the real champion of the summer months.

The garden, such as we manage to have here in our little shoebox, has been suffering for it, with a lovely Colourbond fence reflecting most of the day’s brutal sunlight straight down onto the long, potentially useful garden bed that runs the length of our tiny backyard. Nothing survives long in there, except one pestilential shrub thing that nevertheless at least gives the backyard a little shade, and a scrawny bottlebrush that should never have been planted there, and, miracle of miracles, one passionfruit vine that has not yet succumbed. It’s in a slightly more sheltered spot, in the lee of aforementioned pestilential shrub thing.

We are forced to water the garden almost daily, which could be worse, of course. We could have a garden like my mother’s – a massive 1/4 acre around the homestead as well as sprawling grounds and vegetable gardens around the outbuildings a mile away from the house. And they do have to chase hoses endlessly there! Here it’s a once-a-day job, done in an hour and a half or so.

Today, we got a surprise! In one of my pot plants, one I’ve had for ages but that isn’t thriving like I wish it would (creeping ivy, which I tried to train around a wreath), have sprung up the most astonishing fungi. They weren’t there yesterday, when I enthusiastically watered the pot plant. There was no sign of the neon yellow fruiting bodies at all. And then today, when we got home from work and were just letting the cat out to lounge in the sun, Frog found this…

In the UK, apparently, it's known as the plantpot dapperling, which is an exceptionally charming moniker

In the UK, apparently, it’s known as the plantpot dapperling, which is an exceptionally charming moniker

Frog immediately went to Dr Google (the Eminent Mycologist) and came up with a Mushroom Appreciation page, and that gives a nice synopsis of what the fungus is, why it’s so suddenly occurred in my innocent ivy (hot weather plus watering), and how to get rid of it.

“What????” I cried. “Why would anyone want to get rid of it?” It’s so beautiful. I adore surprise mushrooms of all descriptions, even the dreaded puffballs, which are an endless source of fascination to me. I can’t tell you how truly chuffed I am to have this little beauty in my pot plant.

It’s not edible, though.