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Jan 30, 2013 08:10 AM

Morels within a few hours of Phila. area?

When and where are the best locations for hunting for fresh morels within a few hours of CC Phila.? I'd love to use some fresh morels instead of reconstituting dried ones.

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    1. Morels aren't in season until mid-April at the earliest, weather dependent.

      Honestly, you're best off planning a nice hike. Morels would be a bonus. My mushroom hunting buddies mostly keep their spots secret. And all the spots I frequent are on private land.

      That said, best of luck. Nothing quite as wonderful as a good fresh morel.

      3 Replies
      1. re: Boognish

        Boognish without revealing where you go, have you been successful finding mushrooms in Eastern PA? I thought they were much more plentiful in W, PA and Ohio.

        1. re: cwdonald

          I was raised in central PA in the Appalachians, so that's really my foraging spots. I always keep my eyes open in the parks, and I've found lots of other edibles, but so far, no morels.

          That said, I'm not the world's best morel hunter. I have some friends with preternatural senses for the little guys, but I just roam around until I find them.

          They love disturbed land and recent fires, if that helps (probably not).

          1. re: cwdonald

            I know Tom Coulton found some by the side of the road between his farm and the Headhouse Farmers Market, and I have a friend who lived in NE PA and she has found them when she has returned for a visit there. so they exist! Also Livingoods had (found) them a few years ago

        2. Thanks all--I appreciate the input, maybe the the meetup would be best for a first timer!! I guess to clarify the question a bit, I was wondering what rotting tree types, topography, proximity to water, shady areas vs. light filled, fields vs. woods--in other words, the characteristics of places where morels are found in PA. I agree with the walk comment,,, maybe morel hunting is a good walk made frustrating:):)

          2 Replies
          1. re: phoodieofphila

            We've found them on the south side of ridges with good drainage and plenty of humus. Usually found with tulip poplars and in close proximity to lady slippers. Actually, the lady slippers are ever rarer than the morels!

            I have a buddy who can just tell there are some around by the conditions of the soil. It's eerie.

            In a worst case scenario, Anastasi Produce at 9th and Christian usually carries them in the spring.

            1. re: Boognish

              Thanks Boognish, that is very helpful... I actually know of a place replete with lady slippers in lancaster co. I also think the mycenae group of phila. meetup sounds great.

          2. Although they are not freshly hunted, Wegman's always has a steady supply of dried morels. They run about eight dollars and change for --well, not that much. Put them in water to reconstitute and incorporate them into whatever dish you are making. They aren't bad. Just a suggestion.

            1. If you can wait till April-ish (in-season) you might want to give Pete's Farm Market in Westtown/West Chester a call. If they won't have it, no one will.

              2 Replies
              1. re: arepo

                Thanks for the tip! If I fail (reasonably likely) this is a good alternative.

                1. re: arepo

                  Really? I wasn't aware that Pete's cultivated or sold any mushrooms. They grow them onsite?