Scarlet Elf Cup

Scarlet Elf Cup is the name an uncommon mushroom which grows in damp woodland areas upon leaf mould, twigs and sticks. Like all fungi, it extracts its nutrients and energy from the earth rather than photosynthesising sunlight. Consequently, these bright red growths often appear in the darkest places, where regular plants could not survive. Scarlet Elf Cup, along with its indistinguishable cousin, the Ruby Elf Cup, proves a welcome sight on dreary winter walks. Like snowdrops and croci, it heralds brighter, more colourful times ahead. Yet in open fields and parks it will not be seen. Only among the decaying and decomposing organic matter will you find it, upon fallen branches, discarded twigs, last year’s leaves. God sometimes sends us the sweetest tokens of His grace only when we are in the dankest places.

O Lord, You brought my soul up from the grave; You have kept me alive, that I should not go down to the pit.

Psalm 30:3

Pictures: CAB