How will a mild winter affect the 2020 morel mushroom season?


What will a mild winter due to the upcoming Morel Mushroom Season ?

     I have found them here in Georgia as early as late February that particular year and then turn cold in the early bird Morels just sat and waited for a warm spell to start growing again.

Daffodils and dandelions have been blooming here in Atlanta the last two weeks.

     But now just had a big cold snap with 3 inches of snow…

     Generally a season may be a week early or maybe a week late and since Morels grows slowly up to three weeks from the time that they’re a little baby gray until they are fully mature yellows. You can usually hit a specific date and still do well over the last 30 year averages.

     The mild winter shouldn’t affect them much unless ground temperatures reach into the 50s which usually takes about two weeks of 70° temperatures during the day. In the past 25 years, I can remember only one season where it warmed up in February and stayed warm throughout the entire south and midwest. This made them appear about 3 weeks earlier than normal.

What are the best overall signs to know that it’s time to start looking for Morels?

My best overall sign for Morial season beginning is on the red bud trees start to bloom one other one is also apple blossoms coming out those are the two best overall signs to look for.

Other signs to look for in the spring:

How will the season be affected if it’s a very low snowfall year or or drought during the winter?

     Generally the amount of precipitation during the winter is not the main factor to be looking for during Morel season. The one exception would be pacific northwest with snowmelt but even there you will need a sufficient amount of spring time rains to go along with the snowmelt. The rest of the country winter precipitation will not affect the morel season as long as when the ground temperatures warm up for Morels to start putting out little babies and growing and there’s sufficient enough rain at that exact time.

What happens when Morel starts growing and then there’s a freeze?

     This is a very common situation and occurs nearly every season. The mushrooms themselves generate a small amount of heat to protect themselves. In the study below there was a nice clump of baby Morels starting to growing and then there was a freeze. You can see what actually happened. Some totally froze out some was completely unaffected, others were only damaged.

     It’s definitely not a good thing for them to be a freeze once they start growing because it will definitely decrease the overall quantity of Morels that will grow and mature.

     A cold snap of what you will have a low of maybe 30 or 31 or 32° will not affect them maybe not at all however if it stays 27 or below for more than four hours this will start to affect them and will cause damage on the top and maybe completely destroy the babies. If this happens they will turn mushy and completely disintegrate within a couple of days after the freeze.

Other things you can do to help you and prepare you for the upcoming 2020 Morel Mushroom Hunting Season:

  •      Keep a close watch of the progression of the morel mushroom season by viewing the current morel progression maps and see exactly where they have been reported.

  •      Become a member to the Morel Mushroom Hunting Club where you can even text Chris directly and ask him questions or advice.

  •      Join Chris on an amazing guided mushroom hunt (foray), where Chris will take you to his very best morel mushroom spots and show you how to find morels, where to find morels, how to cook morels, including his powerpoint presentation. Chris also covers other springtime edible mushrooms and plants. Then enjoy an incredible feast of all the foraged mushrooms and plants!

I hope you have an incredible 2020 Morel Mushroom season and find record numbers! Enjoy!