These were seen near the hermitage on the last kind-of-day-off. (I haven’t been able to target practice for the last number of weeks, so any day-off isn’t really a day-off.)
If this is a dead red oak tree (hard to tell because the mushrooms are so thick) there’s a good chance that these are little baby Laetiporus sulphureus, otherwise known as Chicken of the Woods shelf mushrooms. “Chicken” because, just like rattle snakes, they taste like chicken. They can get big (from Wikipedia:).
Each shelf is like a chicken breast, prepared just the same way. Delicious. I used to fry these up on the wood stove in the hermitage.
O.K. These are not quite “flowers” if you have to be technical about it. But, if these were Chicken of the Woods and I was a kid with a chainsaw, I would cut the tree so that it wouldn’t quite fall all the way down. I’d get the bed of the truck near to one end and tie up the log with a chain to the back of the truck so that when the rest of it fell it wouldn’t hit the ground except for just the far end. Then I would drag it back to the house and prop it up on one end with some other logs, and then watch the proliferation of chickens, as bright as any flowers could ever be.
Then, when the chickens are all eaten up, the log is still great for firewood if you chop it up right away. Otherwise the roots of the mushrooms will rot the wood fast.
I don’t think Jesus’ good mom would object to such a monstrosity in her garden. It might even put a bit of a smile on her face. Sometimes a little imagination, a little thinking outside the box goes a long way.