How to Find Morel Mushrooms

Want to know how to find these valuable mushrooms?

Morel mushrooms are well known for their delicious taste - but even more so for their elusive nature. Of all edible mushrooms these are the hardest to spot, camouflaging themselves perfectly among the leaf litter of winter. By Spring foragers are itchin' to get out and find some tasty treats in the woods, but that reward doesn't come without hard work... and research!



 

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We are thrilled to annouonce that we found our first batch ever (see video) in Oklahoma this past week and we're here to show you exactly:

when, where, & how!



 

Tips for Finding Morel Mushrooms

  1. Know the Trees - Although there are dozens of species of morels (Morchella genus) across the globe, there are a few trees that stand out as companions to these popular mushrooms. Work on identifying and finding the following trees to help start your search for these tasty mushrooms: American Elm, White Ash, Tulip Poplar, Black Cherry, Apple, & Sycamore

  2. Find the Best Setting - After you know which trees to look for, the best places to look are mature hardwood forests with a good amount of undergrowth. Look for hillsides that lead to creeks, rivers, or lakes. South-facing hillsides are best in the early season (late February/March) as they have more sunshine and therefore warmer soil temperatures.

  3. Understand the Technique - These mushrooms are masters of disguise. It's helpful to get low to the ground, wear gloves, and move around leaf debris and try to get a close look at the rest floor. You’d be surprised how much this step matters, but after all its this technique that helped us find your first batch!


Here is a close up gallery of our first morels, also known as the "Yellow Morel" or Morchella esculenta. Note the ridges and pits, textured stipe, and remember all TRUE morel mushrooms are hollow!


 

With all this said, be BEWARE of Ticks as they are rampant in these morel habitats. Be sure to wear the right gear, be aware of and inspect yourself when you get home.


Our friend at Learn Your Land, Adam Haritan, has a helpful video here where he explains his methods to deal with ticks in Western Pennsylvania.

*Plus* Adam offers a wonderful 4 season course on learning about mushrooms that we highly recommend (we're students ourselves!)



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