I tell ya what, all this shroom talk has made me have a terrible craving for some. This afternoon I picked up some portabellos and sauteed them in butter with some teriyaki sauce. Good stuff, maybe it'll hold me over till morels start popping up
TN I go by ground temp you will not pick a morel until the ground temp hits 52F for a string of days. Hunting after rain is always good but the ground in the spring is always wet due to snow melt in most of the area's I hunt so I go by ground temps.
Do you keep track of soil temp in the spring using a soil thermometer ?
Or do you somehow back/figure into that using weather temps ?
I looked around online (amazon) and found several soil thermometers available. Most of the lesser expensive ones did not get good reviews but the one below is quite cheap (just over 7.00) and gets decent reviews.
Could buy three of those and put them out at different places and monitor the soil temp on the ridge top, part way down the hillside, and hollow bottom. I could also use one of those in my garden.
I agree soil temps of 52 degrees are essential. But I hunt throughout a window of opportunity year after year. Unusually warm temps may begin the morel season a week early. Unusually cold temps may delay the morel season by a week. But typically they grow within the magic window of opportunity each year after year.
My buddy keeps a written record of his first finds up through his last find each year.
I am less scientific and I just hit the woods based off experience at the beginning of the season for here in Ohio and hunt till I am finding no more in early or mid May. I typically do find some bigfoot yellows late in the season although they are few and far between even sometimes past mid May as they are the last ones left and they are huge morels. When they disappear the morel seasons over.
As far as rain goes, I hit the woods daily during the window of opportunity for morels but I have a lot of success a day or two after a nice rain.
Hey just an early tip. Ya all know to carry your morels in a mesh bag so the spores will have a chance to escape and populate the woods with future morels.
So let me ask you this. How many times have you soaked your morels in a sink full of cold water and then drained the water out. Well this water is full of morel spores. Do not salt your soak water. Soak and spray off your morels with unsalted water and then gather your unsalted morel soak water in an empty clean gallon milk jug or milk jugs.
Take your morel spore water in your gallon milk jug and pour it all around a host tree, Elm, Poplar, Ash, Hickory, Apple.
After about 2 to 3 years there will be a good chance of morels popping up in the area that you poured the morel spore water. Trust me it works. The only key is you cannot store the spore water for more that a couple of days as it will sour. So try and pour it within a day or so. I have started many new morel mushroom spots this way and my buddy did not believe me until it worked on his Apple tree that never had morels around it. It took 2 seasons for them to come up but they did and pretty much right where he poured the spore water.
I remembered you saying that about the morel soak water last year and unfortunately that was after I soaked mine in salt water and then poured it down the drain afterwards.
I am sure going to take your advice on that this year and plan to pour my (after soaking/spraying) water and pour it around my two apple trees and also going to take some over to my mom's and pour it around that HUGE dieing Ash tree in her yard.
I sure hope that works - will be nice to have some poping up for easy picking each year.
On that shroom I found this morning.
I was putting gypsum down on my last 4 remaining wild-sim plantings and found this lil shroom poking up right in the middle of one of my planting beds.
Obviously not a morel, but hey it is a shroom.
Sort of deep chocolate brown, 3.5\" tall, sort of skinny.
The seng bed it was growing in was at the bottom of a mostly north facing hill (slightly N/E).
Looked like it might be just a youngen, may have just poped out after that 77 degree evening we had couple days ago.
Not really thinking of eating it - not goiong to eat any shroom I can't positively ID, but thought I would post a pic or two and see if you experienced guys know what type it might be.
This one would fall under an LBM. LBM is an unscientific classification called \"Little Brown Mushroom\"
There are many mushrooms that are easy to ID to experienced mushroom hunters that hunt spring, summer, fall and early winter.
However as far as LBM's there are thousands and even the experts have a hard time identifying them. So they take on the name LBM's. Some LBM's are poisonous and even deadly, some are edible and some contain Psilocybin's and are hallucinogenic.
TN, the one you have posted looks like about 10 different LBM's that I am able to ID out of the thousands and without a spore print it would be hard for me to even attempt to ID.
It could literally be one of the thousands of LBM's out there. Most likely a type of Panaeolus foenisecii .
TN I use the gov. soil temp web site to get close. When I travel I hunt sun exposed area's first I check soil temp when I get out of the truck with a HVAC style therm. Like Latt talked about I hunt the window have over 20 years of data and it's a give or take 5 days every year. My best advise is don't worry about all the old school ways, the greatest tool will be the web site Morel.com they have a TN site just watch the site and when folks are finding them in your area hit the woods hard. You'll get the feel for when with some years of history just like you've done with ginseng. I second the LBM one could spend a life time studying those.
Latt great advise with the morel water been doing it for over 20 years and works great have started morel patches all over my area. I use a shot of honey in the water with great results.