Mushrooms: 4 tips for finding the right picking spot
With chestnut picking, mushroom picking is a key fall activity for the whole family. However, many are more comfortable finding mushrooms in supermarkets than in the forest! Also, you can sometimes leave empty-handed with your pretty wicker basket, even when you are patient and have a good sense of observation. Indeed, being methodical makes it possible to cover the ground well so as not to miss anything. However, that is not always enough to find a mushroom corner. If there isn’t… well! there are not any. Everything is therefore a question of location, weather and seasonality. There are thus many parameters and just as many tips to find your place to collect edible mushroom species !
1) To find the right mushroom spot, you have to do it at the right time
Not all fungi are woodland fungi, some of them growing in meadows, pastures or lawns. And in the same way, not all enjoy the same weather conditions . Temperature and humidity are indeed very important. Some mushrooms like warm, humid air, while others prefer cool or dry air. They also have their seasonality and we will not find the same all year round. Often, bolete, porcini, oyster mushroom and chanterelle thrive in the forest in the fall. As for truffles, they are to be found in December as a priority. Morels are generally considered to be a January mushroom.
Nevertheless, it is also possible to find morels in spring, chanterelles, porcini mushrooms and boletus in summer and take advantage of the end of summer / beginning of autumn to find death trumpets, hairy coprins, mutton’s foot, wild mushroom. ewe (or goat’s foot) or all kinds of chanterelles (ash chanterelles, yellow chanterelles, tube chanterelles, etc.). In short, everything is a question of region and you will need to find out beforehand what is growing in your area !
2) The right place and the right timing
In case of light rains, favor humid beds. And on the contrary, in case of heavy rains, go to so-called sand forests. Due to their permeability, you will certainly find fungi there. Also remember to look in the right places ! In general, taking the trails (where everyone goes) is not the best idea. Do not hesitate to go a little deeper into the undergrowth. So look where there are dead leavesand feel free to lift them. Mushrooms tend to… “grow like mushrooms” just below! Also remember to spot the trunks lying on the ground, the hollows of stumps, abundant moss, humus, woody roots or even streams or gouilles. However, avoid picking near roads. The fungi are very polluted there.
3) Adapt your strategy to the types of mushrooms sought
Some fungi grow only under deciduous trees, others under conifers, and some under both. To increase your chances of finding the spot where your favorite mushrooms grow, brush up on your tree knowledge!
-Where there is moss and shaded areas, there are porcini mushrooms , especially under pines, oaks or beeches! Ceps particularly appreciate deciduous forests. The opportunity to open your eyes and perhaps also find trumpets-of-the-dead, great and verdant russulas, or geotrobe clitocybes (another name for the monk’s head fungus).
-The coulemelle is distinguished by thriving in brighter areas, on the edge of woods, in grasses or near shrubs.
-If there are conifers and hardwoods, but also water points, chanterelles are never far away.
-Under the deciduous trees (oaks, chestnuts, beeches, etc.), you will findboletus and russulas great .
-Rosé -des-Prés thrives in meadows and pastures and the hairy coprin prefers lawns and clearings.
Delicious milkweed, salmon milkweed and earthy tricholoma are found in pine and fir forests. So watch out for spruces, larches and other pines.
-The favorite hiding place of the pied-de-mouton is near the deciduous trees, in particular the beeches
-The burgundy ceps, blue feet, amanitas of Caesars and other chanterelles appreciate the forests of mixed woods combining deciduous shrubs and conifers.
The white lepion will appreciate a calcareous soil.
4) Final tips for collecting mushrooms in the right place:
Remember to avoid the ingestion of certain toxic and poisonous mushrooms. Indeed, if their flavor is pleasant in pan-fried, velvety or risotto, as much to say that they will be it only once! Picking mushrooms therefore requires a minimum of mycological knowledge . If the specialists in associations and friendly gatherers can give you information, your pharmacist will also surely be able to guide you. A mushroom guide can also inform you about their toxicity. This will limit the risk of poisoning or digestive disorders. In any case, ban plastic bags that rot wild mushrooms. Prefer the good old wicker baskets or paper bags or wallets that you can close to separate the different species of mushrooms and prevent them from packing up when you trudge through the undergrowth!