Morel mushrooms include members of Morchella, a genus of edible mushrooms. They have a distinctive honeycomb-like appearance and are highly prized for cooking, especially in French cuisine. Morels are one of the easiest edible mushrooms to grow and require relatively little maintenance. Morels need some type of plant material to grow on, adequate moisture and protection from the sun.
Things You'll Need
- Morel spawn
- Oak or elm tree
- Chicken wire
- Oak mulch
Select a location. Morel mushrooms will need at least partial shade, so the north side of a tree or wall is best. Ensure that this area is large enough to accommodate the plant bed you'll be using.
Obtain spores for morel mushrooms. You can buy a culture or spawn of morel mushrooms commercially and you may be able to find morel mushroom patches at a garden supply store. You can also make your culture by soaking mature morel mushrooms in water. This water will eventually contain a large number of morel spores.
Use an enclosure to protect the mushrooms. You can do this by erecting chicken wire around the desired area or you can make a fully enclosed structure. The enclosure needs to keep the mushrooms from being eaten or inadvertently damaged.
Make a bed for the mushrooms. Lay down about three inches of oak chips, mulch or shavings and soak it in enough water to make it moist but not dripping wet. Sprinkle your culture or spore over the bed. If you're using a patch, you'll simply place on top of the bed. Cover the spores with another three inches of oak bedding.
Keep the mushroom bed moist. You should water it as needed whenever it dries out. Cover the mushroom bed with a cloth to protect it from freezing temperatures. The bed will require two years to become fully productive.
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