I spent this entire spring season looking for morel mushrooms. It was a challenging season to say the least, but it was rewarding and productive. I’m also into flowers, especially spring flowers, so it didn’t take much persuasion to get me out. Even on the days many would consider dismal I found excitement at the thought of going into the woods. I watched as the spring beauties made their debut. I was also around for the venomous abomination we call, tick. I plucked my fair share during my search for the elusive shroom. I recall one time in particular where I found seven on me at once. That one was a little unnerving. I know looking for morels this early in the sason is a little ambitious, but why not. You never know when one might jump up earlier than anticipated; I wanted to be ready. Nonetheless, the spring beauties came and went in a colorful dance and I was no more richer in the fungi category.
As the rest of the spring flowers emerged, e.g., cutleaf toothwart, bluebells, violets, anemone, hepatica, toadshade trillium, and large flower trillium, I found it difficult to stay focused. My sensory perception was locked in overdrive with all the fragrant colors. However, when the mayapples made an appearance I doubled my effort. It’s been my experience that when these shady canopies emerge the shrooms will come. I’ve always found it fascinating that the flower of the may apple is under it’s leaf structure. It also must have two leaves or it will not have a bloom. I spent every free second traveling to places where I might have the opportunity to find them, but I found no success.
Then, one evening I was out throwing a round of disc golf when I ran into a friend from many moons ago. It had been a while since we had talked or seen each other, but our relationship was exactly how it left off. Peaceful, fun, and kind. I know, right! Anyway, he noticed me looking towards the ground more than concentrating on disc golf and asked if I was looking for the elusive. I let out a sigh and informed him of my plight. I had promised myself I would do all I could to make sure my grandmother had some morels. She’s not in the best shape and I’m not sure she’ll be around for another season of them. (She’s currently on chemo and struggling to keep her weight and strength. Not to mention she took a fall recently from her blood pressure dropping. That however, is a tale for another day.) I hadn’t informed my grandmother as I didn’t want to get her hopes up and not deliver. After our chat about it he told me he would keep his eyes out for some.
Three days later I received a message from my friend, Greg Randolph. He simply asked, “you still wanting some mushrooms for your grandmother?” With overwhelming joy I replied, “Yes, please “and provided an address. The next day my grandmother was gifted 11 morels. Wouldn’t you know it, she soaked them in salt water that evening then awoke at 4:30 in the morning to eat them. I would say she was more than excited.
As for my search. I never did give up. I kept looking and looking and looking, but never found a one. Complete goose egg, i.e., zero. I did realize, at times, it requires a group effort to arrive at success. Thank you for the TBM, Greg. You’re truly a beautiful human BEING!