Before I share this week’s new video with you, I wanted to let you know that there are only 3 days left to enroll for Foraging Wild Mushrooms. Whether you’re interested in foraging mushrooms for food, for medicine, for study, or just for fun, this online course covers the most important lessons to get you started and to keep you going!
Foraging has led to profound impacts on my life (e.g., better health, deeper nature connection, lasting friendships with other nature enthusiasts), and I’d love for you to experience the same.
After months of low-to-no activity put forth by the fungal kingdom, it’s nice to finally observe a variety of familiar spring mushrooms appearing like clockwork. All it takes is a bit of rain and warmth to turn even the most fungally-barren tree stump into a treasure trove of mushrooms overnight.
I recently spent some time in a tulip tree grove in search of mid-spring fungi and thought I’d film the experience. If you’re interested in seeing which mushrooms made it into the frying pan that fruitful day, check out the brand new video!
Thanks for reading and watching… and as always, thank you for your support!
I’m extremely excited to announce that registration for my upcoming online course will be open next week on Monday, May 6th.
Foraging Wild Mushrooms is a four-season course designed to help you confidently and successfully forage wild mushrooms. Whether you’re interested in foraging for food, for medicine, for study, or just for fun, this online course covers the most important lessons to get you started and to keep you going!
This course is presented entirely online and it features over 65 brand new videos that cover all the essentials when it comes to foraging wild mushrooms, including mushroom ecology; mushroom biology; common edible mushrooms; medicinal mushrooms; poisonous mushrooms; cooking techniques; medicine-making; and more.
Upon registration, you can watch the videos at your own pace and you will have access to the course forever.
Please note that Foraging Wild Mushroomswill only be open for registration for one week only, from midnight on May 6th to Monday, May 13th. After May 13th, registration will be closed.
If you’re interested in signing up for Foraging Wild Mushrooms, mark your calendar for Monday, May 6th and visit this link.
I’ve derived so much enjoyment foraging wild food and medicine from the fungal kingdom over the years, and I’d love to help you experience the same life-changing thrills too!
I hope to see you on Monday, May 6th!
Before I introduce the new video, I want to let you know that I’ll be an instructor at the upcoming Blue Hills Forager’s Gathering along with Samuel Thayer and Melissa Price (Forager’s Harvest) and Ellen Zachos (Backyard Forager). This event will take place the weekend of May 17-19th in Bruce, Wisconsin.
The Blue Hills Forager’s Gathering will focus on gathering and preparing meals from food we forage together during the weekend classes and walks, and people of all skill levels are welcome to attend.
If you’re interested in learning more about gathering and preparing wild edibles — all while spending time with an incredible group of nature enthusiasts! — you can find out more information here:
I’ll bet I’m not the only one who’s excited that spring is finally here. There’s something about budding trees, budding plants, and budding mushrooms that brings immense pleasure to those of us very accustomed to months of cold and darkness.
To celebrate the birth of another growing season, I thought I’d film a list of 9 wild mushrooms that you can forage during the spring months. These mushrooms are edible, they’re tasty, and they might soon be popping up in your neck of the woods.
Some of these species can be quite elusive, and if you want to learn some tips on where to find them, check out the brand new video!
In addition to fungi, spring ephemeral wildflowers are blooming! Pictured here is a rare species that’s among the first to flower near my home, and it’s a plant I look forward to seeing every spring. Have you seen Snow Trillium? Check out this recent Instagram post to learn more!
Classifying wild mushrooms as edible or not edible isn’t as straightforward as one may think. Confusing matters even more, the labels edible and poisonous aren’t always clearly defined either.
Take the mushroom pictured above, for example.
Its name is the Late Fall Oyster, and this wild mushroom is listed in many field guides as edible. It’s no surprise, then, that countless hungry mushroom enthusiasts forage and eat the Late Fall Oyster every year.
However, if you do a little digging around online, you’ll eventually encounter the warning that the Late Fall Oyster is potentially carcinogenic. Consequently, many people recommend against eating this fungus due to the possibility that it may contain cancer-causing compounds.
I’ve heard both sides of the story, and having eaten the Late Fall Oyster in the past, I was recently inspired to discover any “truth” to this issue. After a little bit of work and research, I received some answers.
If you’d like to learn more about the controversial status regarding the Late Fall Oyster’s edibility, check out the brand new video!
If you love Eastern Skunk Cabbage, thank a fungus! It may not seem obvious, though fungi contribute immensely to the health and success of wetland habitats. To learn more about this intimate relationship between two very different organisms, check out the recent Instagram post!
In my neck of the woods, January is certainly not the most prolific month in terms of wild edible mushrooms. Snow-covered soil and freezing temperatures aren’t very conducive to ample mushroom activity.
Lately, however, conditions around here have been quite different.
The ground is devoid of snow and temperatures have been mild. As a result, our wild woody decomposers — in particular, the fungi that feed on trees — continue to thrive.
Chief among these winter woody decomposers are our jelly fungi. These mushrooms are unique in that their fruiting bodies can persist for months on a stick, log, or stump in a dehydrated or frozen state… only to rebound during a winter rain or warm spell.
Two fascinating jelly fungi that flourish during the winter season include the world-famous Wood Ear (popular in soup recipes) and the Amber Jelly Roll (a close look-alike). Both mushrooms are edible and both are often found in abundance… even amongst snow and freezing temperatures.
If you’re interested in foraging these two enticing jelly fungi this weekend (and perhaps all winter long), check out the brand new video!
Speaking of edible gelatinous mushrooms, the Orange Jelly Fungus is another common component of the winter forest. Though I don’t feature this species in the aforementioned video, I do discuss its key features in a recent Instagram post. Check it out!
First, I want to say “thank you!” to everyone who purchased a medicinal mushroom tincture last week during the online sale. I didn’t expect this to happen so quickly, though I sold out of my entire inventory and no longer have any products in stock. If you’re interested in purchasing medicinal mushroom tinctures, I will have more available toward the end of January.
Second, let’s talk about Enoki — a wild edible mushroom you can forage during the coldest months of the year. This fungus, also known as Enokitake and Velvet Foot, is often overlooked in the wild due to its smaller size. Interestingly, Enoki is cultivated on a commercial scale and can also be purchased in many grocery stores.
Before you begin your search for wild Enoki mushrooms, however, there’s one thing you should know.
Enoki is not the easiest mushroom to positively identify. It resembles several other LBMs (little brown mushrooms) that grow in similar habitats during similar seasons. To make matters a bit riskier, some of these LBMs are very toxic.
In this new video, I share some tips on positively identifying the wild Enoki mushroom. I also compare and contrast this species to the Deadly Galerina — a poisonous LBM that could be confused for the edible Enoki mushroom.
If you’re interested in safely and confidently harvesting wild edible mushrooms this winter season, check out the brand new video!
Have you seen any brightly colored fungi recently? Plenty, including Mock Oysters, can be found even during the remaining days of autumn. Check out this recent Instagram post to learn more!Click to view post
Thanks for reading and watching, and as always, thank you for your support!
It’s no surprise that I love finding, researching, and discussing medicinal mushrooms. Plenty of research suggests that these wild fungi demonstrate powerful anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, and anti-viral effects, and many experts consider them to be top candidates for immune-system support.
Here’s what the research says:
A 2012 study from ISRN Oncology found that the Turkey Tail mushroom significantly improved the immune systems of breast cancer patients following conventional treatment.
The Chaga fungus is one of the richest sources of betulinic acid, a compound that has been shown to exhibit anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-inflammatory, anti-HIV, anti-malaria, and antioxidant effects (Current Medical Chemistry, 2005).
A Maitake mushroom extract has been shown to demonstrate protection against diabetes by slowing glucose absorption in the body (Biotechnology and Applied Biochemistry, 2013).
And the list goes on and on.
In addition to sharing the videos I film, another passion of mine is creating high-quality wild food supplements using the finest ingredients, including wild harvested mushrooms and locally gathered Pennsylvania spring water. These are all medicines I consume on a routine basis to optimize my health and maintain a robust immune system.
For the next two weeks, I am offering a sale on all medicinal mushroom extracts from the online store. All products are discounted, and all orders placed in the United States will receive free shipping!
Because I create extractions in small batches to ensure quality, I only have a limited amount available. Once these tinctures are sold out, I won’t have another batch ready for about 8 weeks.
The leaves have fallen from most of the deciduous trees in my neck of the woods (save for a few Norway maples and persistent oaks), and even though the year is dwindling with predictable haste, wild edible plants and mushrooms can still be found.
During a recent walk through a local floodplain, I was excited to find several fresh greens sprouting amongst the leaf litter. Many of these plants were herbaceous members of the celery family, and a few others were aromatic species related to mints and chives.
Rather than treating them as trailside nibbles, I decided to harvest these tasty plants and incorporate them into a wild, homemade vegetable broth. With the addition of wild edible mushrooms, the broth was incredibly easy to make and quite delicious.
If you’re interested in learning how to forage local plants and mushrooms so that you too can create a homemade vegetable broth, check out the brand new video!
Have you seen this waxcap mushroom? Few fungi resemble this species, and if you’re in the right habitat, perhaps you’ll encounter a specimen or two! Check out this recent Instagram post to learn more about the violet-colored waxcap.Click to view post
Thanks for reading and watching, and as always, thank you for your support!
With only a handful of weeks left in 2018, I’m hitting the road one last time this year to offer a few exciting events. During these programs, I’ll be discussing the bounty of mushrooms and other foods associated with one of my favorite groups of trees: oaks! Here’s the current schedule:
November 5, Clemson, SC: South Carolina Upstate Mycological Society November 7, Atlanta, GA: Mushroom Club of Georgia November 12, Slippery Rock, PA: Bartramian Audubon Society
Moving forward, let’s talk about the Angel Wing (Pleurocybella porrigens).
In older field guides, this fungus — which looks a lot like a small oyster mushroom — is listed as edible and good. In more recent guides, this mushroom is accompanied by the warning: not recommended for eating. And according to many credible sources today, the Angel Wing is considered poisonous.
And not just mildly toxic, but deadly poisonous.
So how did it happen? How does a mushroom go from being “edible and good” to “poisonous?”
Well, that’s the topic of today’s brand new video. In it, I discuss the controversy associated with a species once widely touted as an edible mushroom. Check it out!
I missed the opportunity to photograph this tiny green mushroom back in June, hoping that it would reappear during a more favorable moment in the future. Fortunately, it did… and I was able to spend a few precious minutes with this little green slimer last week. Check out this recent Instagram post to hear more of the story!
I’d like to say “thank you!” to everyone who registered for (and inquired about!) the upcoming Fall Flora & Fungi Outing on Saturday, October 14th at Cook Forest State Park. The event filled to max capacity and registration is now closed.
If you’re interested in learning how to harvest and process acorns from start to finish, I’ll be demonstrating the steps involved for the Botanical Society of Western Pennsylvania on Monday, October 8th. The topic is “Acorn History, Harvesting, & Preparation: An Intimate Look At Pennsylvania’s Oak Trees,” and the meeting is free to the public. If you’re interested in attending this event in Pittsburgh, click here for more information!
Next, let’s talk about edible mushrooms… specifically, the ones that can be harvested during the autumn season.
There are lots of them. Perhaps more than you’d ever encounter during any other season. Cool temperatures and ample rainfall provide the perfect conditions for fungal growth, and if you’re prepared for the bounty, you’ll never leave the woods empty handed.
In this brand new video, I cover 16 (yes… 16!) wild edible mushrooms you can forage right now.
Okay… I forgot to include one mushroom. This species makes the list at #17, and if you’re interested in learning more about an aromatic mushroom that loves hanging out in coniferous forests, check out this recent Instagram post!