It’s that time of the year again: The time when everyone in St. Louis who is taking walks outside is hoping to come across some morels. The coveted mushrooms are perfect to use in your adventures in home cooking or when you’re trying to execute a fancy French recipe.
Morel mushrooms (or Morchella, as they are officially named) have a short growing season that varies each spring depending on the ground temperature. But right now is the perfect time to find them, so we’ve gathered some tips so you can become an expert mushroom scout while out on your nature walks.
So where are the best place to find these tasty treasures? We turned to the Missouri Department of Conservation for answers.
They have many tips about mushroom hunting on their website and lots of specific tips for morels, specifically. The MDC says that April is peak morel season
in southern Missouri and that the season usually lasts for four to six weeks.
“Morels seem to pop up overnight! They usually grow in 24 to 48 hours,” says the MDC
. “Look for morels in moist woods, river bottoms, and on south-facing slopes. They’re often found near dead elm trees, in old orchards or burned areas.”
In addition to these specific tips, they say to make sure to check in forests where you know that morels have been found before. And since they grow so quickly, don’t write off a good spot just because you searched through it once and didn’t find anything. Return again in a few days and you might be surprised by what you find.
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