The Marvellous Candlesnuff Fungus !

“The marvellous what?” I hear you ask! Well quite! I stumbled across this incredibly interesting fungus over a year or so ago, when I was researching book 14 from my ‘Whimsy Wood’ children’s series . I often have a good old nosey through various woodland websites, to see what flora and fauna are out and about in a UK wood, for the particular month I am writing about you see. Alongside drinking copious cups of coffee and trying to look ‘terribly busy’! Anyway, book 14 is about the happenings within ‘Whimsy Wood’ for the scrumptious month of September. Once I’d discovered the charming candlesnuff fungus (xylaria hypoxylon, if we’re going to get all technical!) what else could I possibly write about, than this intriguing and fabulously named fungus?! So with my imagination ignited, I put pen to paper and before I knew it, ‘Fearne Fairy And The Candlesnuff Camp’ had been created, written and I was ‘moonwalking’ across the office floor with sheer delight and excitement!

Candlesnuff Fungus - Xylaria hypoxylon

Candlesnuff fungus growing on dead deciduous wood, which is where it’s happiest!

I mean just look at it, with its snuffed candle wick appearance! I’m starting to wonder if this was where the idea for the commonly used ‘glo-sticks’ came from! In fact, another similarity this fungus has with our party accessory, the glo-stick’, is that it’s rather rubbery and you can actually bend it without breaking it! There’s a handy fact for you to share at parties! Oh and before I go on to spill some inside information about my series, I’d better be responsible and inform you, that although this fungus is not poisonous, it is entirely inedible! Probably tastes like a ‘glo-stick’ too!!

Now, to folk who are aware of my ‘Whimsy Wood’ children’s series, the appearance of a certain ‘Fearne Fairy’ will be somewhat of a surprise! This is because wee ‘Posie Pixie’ is the main character in the 1st seven books (which makes up the 1st set) in my series. Once we reach book 8 (the start of the 2nd set of seven books) ‘Posie’ and her jingling, tinkling bluebell hat, get to have a rest and lie down in a dark room from all the excitement of her adventures in ‘Whimsy Wood’! Along with ‘Fearne Fairy’, you’ll also get to meet ‘Mustard the Magpie Moth’ (Fearne’s best friend) and ‘Dr Tustle the Tawny Owl’. ‘Dr Tustle’ is of course the woodland’s resident doctor and is a rather serious, older member of the ‘Whimsy Wood’ community. He makes his 1st appearance in book 7, ‘Posie Pixie And The Pancakes’ (the last book in the 1st set and written for the month of February!) This will be released early Spring-time next year.

I fear I have given away a lot of inside secrets this week and before I share anymore, I’d best away and attempt to ‘look busy’ somewhere else! If you want to keep up to date with the latest illustrations, book launches and school visits, then pop over to the Whimsy Wood Facebook page and ‘like’ us, thank you 😉

Wishing you all a Whimsical Wednesday!


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