My niece who lives close by have access to a couple of Morel mushroom fields showed me 2 fields of these mushrooms. She gave me a bunch and spores to plant at my place. She said there are 2 varieties, the regular color and the white ones, which are better tasting.
I really enjoy hunting morels, and eating them too.
Our season is over here… on my place when redbuds are still blooming and dogwoods first start opening… that is the time to look. We are past that here now, and they are gone.
Below are a couple that I found back around 4/10.
TN, you don’t grow them around the house or garden? I am learning how to grow myself, my niece gave me a large back to get started.
Had to go to Google to watch some of the ways to grow them.
Not many takers here on the forum. Wondering if they are to hard to get going. Don’t know if I like the taste, some say, it’s like eating dirt.
Good luck. Love them, but they’re notoriously difficult to ‘grow’.
I had some pop up last year, and a couple of tiny ones again this spring, in a spot at the edge of the yard, where I’ve dumped my morel rinse water(when I’ve been lucky enough to find any) for the last 25 years.
I agree with @Lucky_P the odds of starting a patch are slim. I’m fortunate enough that there are some growing in the back yard. However, we had to cut down the ash tree that I’m pretty sure they were affiliated with. I’m hoping they’ll take a liking to my apple trees, which I planted in the area we find morels. Just one so far this year. Hoping there will be a nice flush after all the rain we’re getting.
I have tried collecting spores… when washing them use spring water and catch the bath water which should contain spores… then find a good host tree to pour that water around. Ash poplar elm, etc.
I know some guys up north that have had luck with that… saw pics of the results… but I have had no luck with that myself.
I have 3 places on my property that I find them regular… growing wild. But with our weather my season is usually very short… week… or two… and it is over here.
$50 a pound here. We’ve made good money to save up to go out for a nice meal.
Best bet is increasing your yield in your current patch by crumbling up old caps and tossing them around. Other forms of propagation are highly unreliable.
No ash, poplar, elm anywhere near my house - by design; it’s all oaks, hickory/pecan, persimmon, mulberry… and apples/pears out in the orchard.
The spot where I’ve traditionally dumped my rinse water is near the top of the pond spillway… kinda shady from willows, a red mulberry, black walnut and shellbark hickory grafted onto pecan rootstock on all sides. We’ve been dumping every piece of paper/cardboard and all limbs from the yard & orchard trees - for 25+ yrs - in the ditch where the spillway almost ate back through the dam, just below the area I’ve ‘seeded’ on multiple occasions over the years. They may have popped up there before last year,and I just didn’t see them.
EAB seems not to have arrived here… or at least, every green or white ash on our place still looks healthy, and I don’t see a bazillion dead ash trees from the highway, like I see in central KY. But, at some point, EAB will be here, and there’ll be a million dead ash… sad, but could be a boon to the morel crop.
I’ve been striking out in the woods, turns out I needed to look more carefully around my pile of drip tape.
TN, those looks like the white kind that are better tasting,you lucky …!
My in-laws sent a few down to me last spring, but my wife forgot about them for a couple days (she is who was responsible for delivering them). I googled and did the slurry method out by a couple of my apple trees (heavily around one which has never given me an apple)… I also watered regularly adding wood ashes a couple of times.
I’m not expecting anything this year (though I will admit to looking).
@hoosierbanana — just a fyi… it is best to cut or pinch them off just above ground level. I slice mine off with my sharp pocket knife. Good to make sure the stem is hollow… there is a false morel that has a solid stem… but looks somewhat like a morel otherwise.
Hollow stem good… solid stem… pass.
Does the false moral come up at the same time?
I trimmed the butts off and planted them, that seems to work with chanterelles. I found a false morel once and got a good look at the differences, it is really important to learn remember the look alikes, so thank you for the reminder. @Graftman I found it on the same day I was picking half free morels.
Found some morel today by accident. Mowing and i happened upon them. They were in the very last place I would look which was the first place I should have. My memory like a broken record replayed all the wisdom of those before me in my head from so many years ago. Cedars, burn pile, dead elms now an open field but the morels knew the history. The elms recently died, the cedar is still alive and once I burned piles of trees there years ago. So long ago I had forgotten until I saw the first morel. I made a great deal of biochar in that spot. Morels are companions to certain areas and though we think about them being in the deep woods sometimes they are out in the open.
@hoosierbanana - most morel hunting experts will caution you not to just yank them up by the roots (ok they do not actually have roots) but the base is connected to the part that grows and runs underground… and if you cut or pinch that base off, leaving the base attached… you will have a better chance of having morels in that same location next year.
The other big thing that most experienced morel hunters will tell you to do is carry your morel harvest in a mesh bag… so if they do spore after picking, or if there are spores on them… you can sort of spread them around where you are hunting.
Below is a pretty good youtube vid on Morels, and False Morels, 4 poisonous look alikes.
Again I always slice mine off just above ground with my knife, and check to make sure the stem is hollow… then when I wash mine, I split them in half from top to bottom and verify the inside is hollow from the tip, to the end of the base, as a true morel will be.
Good Luck to all, be safe. Below are a few from another year… you can see how I slice them off at the base. My case canoe knife is pretty much always very sharp, shaving sharp.
The habitat is pretty isolated around here so I feel like my chances get better by expanding patches and starting new ones. They don’t always come back in the same spot, whether I leave the stump attached to the mycelium or not, so I don’t feel like it is an absolute rule to follow.
How do you describe the taste? $50.00 a little much? Like any other mushroom? My niece told me she pick up 3 ticks, picking these mushrooms.
Found a few today here in southern Michigan. They were in my ditch and rock pile. I put a morel slurry in the area a couple years ago and I have also burned leaves in the area. I don’t think pulling them out of the ground hurts at all, but I pinch them off to avoid the extra dirt. If you ever cultivate mushrooms, you’ll realize the body of the mushroom is the mycelium network. The mushroom you pick is just it’s fruit. Pulling a mushroom out of the ground is like yanking an apple off a tree. It’s not really going to hurt the tree. I’ve pulled up plenty of hen-of-the-woods and similar mushrooms with roots attached. They grew back in the same area year after year.