Mushrooms grow throughout the year, but occur more frequently in the fall. Although the cultivated mushrooms are available at any time, most wild mushrooms appear only in the autumn. An exception is the morel, which only grows in the spring. There are many types of mushrooms, and some can be deadly. It is therefore a good idea to learn as much as possible before collecting and eating mushrooms. With the kits you can grow some varieties at home. You can also mail order mushrooms to get the strain of them.
Mushrooms are fruit organs that are used to distribute spores. There are four classes of fungi: parasites, endophytes, mycorrhizae and saprophytes. Parasitic fungi grow on a living host and often kill the tree or plant. Endophytic fungi live in the host plant without injuring them, while mycorrhizal fungi are of mutual benefit to their host. Saprophytic fungi decompose dead trees and plants and contribute to the formation of humus in the soil.
Mushrooms have several functions. Some can be eaten, others are poisonous. Some types are useful as drugs. Fungi play an important role in the decomposition and some species are suitable as bioremediators for the purification of polluted areas.
Track the wild mushroom:
Edible mushrooms are most common in forests in autumn and spring. Some stand at the foot of the trees, others grow on rotted wood. The most popular autumn mushrooms are Matsutakes (Tricholoma magnivelare), Boletus edulis and Golden Chanterelles (Cantharellus cibarius). Morels (Morchella esculenta) are very popular in spring. Mail order mushrooms can provide you the best strain to grow mushrooms in your lawn.
Before you go into the forest, find out what you are looking for, as some fungi are poisonous. Many mycological societies organize mushroom hikes in autumn and spring and some offer identification courses. Buying a good mushroom badge is also essential. Sometimes permits are required to harvest certain species of fungus on public land.
Grow your own:
If you do not want to wait for a specific season or risk taking wild mushrooms, you can use kits to grow your own mushrooms. Some kits are pre-seeded with a spawn or you can drill holes in logs and inoculate the wood yourself.
Morels: the precursors of spring
Although most mushrooms are more common in the fall, morels are one of the few mushrooms that can be found in the spring. Morels often grow among dead elms and have a spongy, scarred and ribbed headdress, which is attached directly to the stem without overhanging. Morels are considered a delicacy. But they must be identified correctly. A similar false morel (Gyromitra spp.) Can cause stomach pain or illness.