We had 25 folks gather on Saturday, May 2, for a field trip up to the area near Jack Creek and surrounding side roads. Julie and I split the group with Paul and Mia as back up support. Some folks, but not everyone, found morels. The yellow spring corals (Ramaria rasilispora) were generally young enough to take home and try, so many participants did. I am waiting for comments on their experience. The delight on Penny’s face (“This made my day!) and Richard’s big smile was worth the whole field trip when they found their first morel. Mia and others found a few nice Spring King buttons (Boletus rex-veris) in the campgroung but I wasn’t so lucky. What a beautiful day with Calypso orchids, wood violets and strawberry blossoms brighting up the forest floor. Such Fun!
My one nice morel this weekend
Calypso orchids dotted the ground in places making it hard not to step on them.
Beautiful flower that grows alongside morels. Photo by John D. Carr.
Spring Kings (Boletus rex-veris)
And it is DRY out there. Please do your best rain dance!
Laurence Boomer presented a diarama about morels for our April 22 meeting and it was very well attended with close to 70 folks wanting into the small room we had reserved. Apologies to those who were turned away, but this is the best we could do under the circumstances of losing our other meeting space. We are looking for a better spot to meet regularly, so if you know of a place in Bend that is fairly cheap and can accomodate our growing group (50-75 people), please let me know (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Meanwhile, I am hearing every day that people are finding some morels, usually near the Metolius river, but also in nearby burns. The season isn’t in full swing yet, at least from what I have heard, but definitely worth a trip to the woods. Many of us will be going out this weekend hoping to score some tasty morsels, so don’t forget to get your mushroom permit before Friday’s closing time at the USFS (4:25.) It’s still early and I hope a little rain happened in the mountains today. Rain dances are in order here.
Please let us know how you do out there.
I have received several emails with pictures of morels from Central Oregon. This is my neighbor Christopher with his kids who found this stash yesterday along the Metolius River. Others have talked about burns around 3500 feet. What have you found?
AN EMAIL FROM JACK ON APRIL 5, 2015
“My wife and I found a few dozen morels in the sunriver area. Most were too small to harvest, and even the small ones were a little dry. Hopefully the little bit of precip we’re expecting this week will help.”
Due to a bit of a double scheduling problem, our April club meeting will be held at the Deschutes Historical Society in downtown Bend. The address is 129 NW Idaho and it is the next block south of the Boys and Girls Club and across the street from Amity Creek school, between Bond and Wall St. Meeting still starts at 6 PM on Weds. evening, April 22. Please join us!
Our own Central Oregon Mushroom Club member, Laurence Boomer, will speak on how to find morel mushrooms at this month’s club meeting, Wednesday, April 22, Deschutes Historical Society, downtown Bend, 129 NW Idaho. Doors open at 6 PM with a show and tell time for the first half hour for those who bring in mushrooms to identify. Laurence’s talk will begin about 6:30. Here is what Laurence wrote about his morel talk:
“I have been hunting edible mushrooms here in Central Oregon since 1990, Judith introduced me to Morels, she had picked Morels occasionally in Montana, and we thence began hunting them here. I became obsessed with mushroom hunting, and by using various guides such as Alexander H Smith’s good old black and white guide, which Judith had, and thence Arora’s All That the Rain Promises and Mushroom’s Demystified, I figured out what, where and when by myself. (Well, along with Judith and my dogs, but the dogs are not interested in mushrooms, only squirrels!)
I have never hunted with anyone else, and all the knowledge I intend to impart at the presentation is my own discoveries amassed purely by spending years hiking through surrounding forest in search of wild edible mushrooms. Because Judith and I love hiking, camping and exploring, and we have our 4 Shepherds who we take walking several miles Every Day, we know most every square inch of the forests around here. I have not hunted Morels anywhere else, so I do not have any information about other areas other than what I have read online in mushroom forums or by reading Michael Kuo’s Book Morels and Langdon cooks book The Mushroom Hunter. I rarely hunt burns, so I am a hunter of Naturals. A teaser hum?? How about, I always return to Green Ridge on my Birthday, June 11th to find the last of the Morels flushing there. Is that going to be the case this year?? I will go and find out! I am assembling a diorama with maps, photos of Morels, terrain and trees bushes etc. I will be fairly specific about areas and times as things have been in previous years, however there are patches I have that I will not reveal. As for all the rest of the presentation, I am going to leave it a surprise, but I believe all will enjoy.”
Found February 17 on the way to the coast from Eugene.
My mushroom maniac friend Dale continues to find mushrooms fruiting near the Oregon coast these days! He sent this photo of a bundle of small Hedgehog mushrooms (Dentinum repandum) with a few Winter Chanterelles (Craterellus tubaeformis.) So late in the season or is it just way too early?!
I don’t know what to think when folks are bringing in fully expanded, spored out but still fresh Agaricus sp. from the COCC campus in mid-February. I heard talk of morels appearing in the Willamette valley. This coming spring mushroom season looks like it will be early and a short one.
Julie let me know that tonight the OPB Oregon Field Guide will be showing a story on Armillaria ostoyae, the Honey Mushroom, famous for their longevity. Should be an interesting view. If you comment on it after you have seen it, all good.
We attended the Oregon Truffle Festival in Eugene a couple weeks ago, only the truflle market, not the full conference. For a $20 entry fee you get to taste some amazing truffle products, watch a couple chefs cook with them, take in a power point program or two on truffles, sample many Oregon wines and Oregon products and more. Without the wine tasting it was only $15. At the market, we bought $40 worth of truffles, $20 for an ounce of Oregon black truffle (Leucangia carthusiana) and $20 for an ounce of Oregon white truffles (Tuber oregonense). The black truffle was very disappointing with a very mild, but pleasant, kinda pineappley flavor. Not much to talk about for $20. The white truffles were much more pungent and impregnated the butter and cream cheese with a great flavor that we used for spreads and dips. TASTY! Later, their deliciousness would return to our mouths and remind us of this yearly treat. Definitely worth the money. You must not cook the truffle, just grate it over pasta or set it near fatty food like butter or cream cheese in an airtight container. Amazing how they flavor everything.
An expensive truffle!!
The posted photo is a French black truffle. This one is costs about $900. For sale at the market, but not for my pocket.