Surprisingly, this Missouri weather has proved good for mushroom seekers. I have had several of my friends post photos on their Facebook pages about finding Morel Mushrooms near my hometown near Jefferson City. I am by no means an expert on mushroom hunting, but I do recall how much fun it was when I was a kid. With gas prices skyrocketing, I know I am scrambling myself to find fun things to do with my son. Mushroom hunting is one of those things that with the proper shoes - I always preferred Rubber Boots because of the mud and the possibility of snakes – and an old potato sack or orange sack as these allow the spores to fall to the ground and will eventually produce more. A person can actual fair pretty well if you find some. These mushrooms make a great appetizer or embellishment to a meal. You do need to make sure that you are finding the Morel Mushrooms though. There are many mushrooms that are not great for us to eat and can be harmful or poisonous. I would suggest going with someone who has been morel hunting before or do some additional research online before going out and picking them on your own.
Some defining factors of a Morel Mushroom are:
- Hollow Cap
- Cone Shape directly attached to a hollow stem
The best time for a person to go out hunting for morels is once the weather gets into the mid to upper 60’s for a few days – the low at night cannot go below 40. Some of my best hunting has come after a good rain. One of the best spots I would tend to find morel’s is near dead logs or tree stumps.
Please make sure you read up on Rules and Regulations. Missouri does not require you to have a Mushroom Hunting License but there are a few places around the area you are not allowed to hunt or pick them.
Don't forget, there will be an informative seminar on Morel Mushrooms this Friday evening, March 30th in our Conservation Room at 7pm. It is expected to be a pretty large turnout, so I suggest coming early to grab a seat.