False morels grow in the same months as true morels. These two types of mushrooms usually appear in the spring months and are confused because of their similarity to each other.
The morel mushroom species generally prefer to grow in fertile soils and humid weather. They tend to begin to wilt and die at the beginning of the autumn/winter season.
Are False Morels in The Same Place as True Morels?
False morels, like other members of the morel family, thrive in moist and fertile soils. With the arrival of spring, morels dispersed in wooded areas prefer to grow singly or in groups.
If there is a drought in the soil, the morels will spread to areas where water and moisture are abundant, and reproduce there instead.
Both species survive by feeding on dead trees and plants in mountainous regions and on the edges of forests.
In addition, the melting of snow from high hills and mountains mixes with the soil and prepares the ground for the growth of morels.
What is a Morel Mushroom?
Morel mushrooms are indispensable for the world’s most famous chefs and mushroom hunters. This mushroom species, which has an enchanting taste, is one of the most sought-after mushrooms in world cuisines.
Morels come in many different sizes. It is possible to see many types of morels, from the one with a rectangular hat to the one with an onion-shaped body.
They have a color spectrum ranging from yellow to gray and have a cap that resembles a wrinkled honeycomb.
Morel mushrooms do not contain toxic substances and therefore they are not poisonous. Known for its close resemblance to the false morel mushroom which is toxic, true morels will not harm you if you consume them.
Morels are known as top-class mushroom species for their delicious taste and easy digestibility. Its structure is more succulent than other mushroom species. This adds even more flavor to the morels.
The morel mushroom is most commonly spotted in Northern Europe and America. It tends to grow in humid and not very hot environments.
What is a False Morel?
False morels are a type of fungus from the morel family, which contain toxic substances and can have fatal consequences when eaten.
This mushroom is easily ingested by accident, because of its similarity to the true morel. It has been the fear of those who have just started mushroom hunting.
False morels contain carcinogens as well as other toxic substances, so eating this mushroom can be fatal. There are many false morel tours around the world.
While the amount of toxic substances in some of these morels is low, in others it is quite high. In addition to not consuming these mushrooms, inhaling their vapors can cause serious side effects.
The false morel, which has a wrinkled hat and a bulbous body, can cause severe headaches, nausea, vomiting, and stomach bleeding if eaten.
If you are not sure whether the mushroom you have collected is a true or a false morel, do not run the risk of eating it. Only eat a morel if you are 100% sure that it is safe.
How Do I Identify a True Morel From a False Morel?
When viewed from the outside, the true morel has a bee-comb-shaped body and cap structure, whereas, in the false morel, the cap is structured and wrinkled towards the body. Also, false morels may be darker in color than true morels.
The external appearance of false morels resembles that of a brain, and its fleshy structure is easily touched when touched.
False morels’ color can vary from dark red to burgundy. Its dark color also provides an incredible camouflage advantage at night.
True morels are empty inside. False morels have a cottony texture inside the gove. True morels have caps attached to their stems and are closer to the base, whereas false morels have only the upper lids attached to the stem.
Where Do False Morels Grow?
False morels breed in valley beds, along stream banks, and on the edges of woodlands. True morels and False morels propagate in almost the same areas. They are fond of places that have a lot of humid air with good drainage.
Morels tend to grow around dead trees and plants. False morels, which grow singly or in groups, can also breed among trees and in the same place every year if suitable climatic conditions occur.
What Happens if You Eat False Morels?
If you eat a false morel, you can get sick or even die. False morels are a very poisonous mushroom type due to the toxins in them.
If false morel is eaten, symptoms of vomiting, severe headache, cramps, fever, and stomach bleeding may be seen.
If acute intervention is not performed, the patient may die. Every year, hundreds of mushroom hunters get sick and die from eating these false morels.
Is There a Poisonous Mushroom that Looks Like A Morel?
There are 4 types of mushroom species that have a similarity to the morel mushroom. Three of these mushrooms are poisonous.
They are known as Verpa Bohemica, Gyromitra, and Verpa Conica. When these three types of mushrooms are ingested, fatal results can occur. Also, these mushrooms do not taste good and have no flavor when compared to morel mushrooms.
How to Identify False Morels
To identify false morels, first look at the caps.
The caps should be drooping and wrinkled. You can see small rings on their trunks, also true morels have ridges on the trunk while false morels rarely have them.
The cover of the false mushroom hangs straight towards the body, whereas in the real morel, the caps are attached to the body.
When you open the inside of the non-edible false morel, you will find a kind of cottony substance. True morels, on the other hand, have a hollow body.
What Countries Have Morels?
Although it is not easy to grow morels, countries such as North America, Turkey, China, the Himalayas, India, and Pakistan are producing and exporting these mushrooms.
These countries have the best climatic conditions for optimal morel growth.
Can You Find Morels Anywhere?
Morels are very selective about where they choose to grow.
Although not often, you can find morels in mountainous and forested areas. You have a higher chance of finding morels in southern regions and on the edges of forests.
Finding morels is not as easy as it seems. You should get the necessary equipment for morel hunting and determine a schedule by following the weather reports weeks before the hunt.