Today I found a morel. It was the first morel I’ve ever found in my life. I’ve never actually looked for them before, nor particularly felt like it, but stumbling across one like this was all it took to launch me into morel mania. I looked for more morels for two and a half hours, but found none. Although I did find a frog, a toad, a butterfly wing, a nodding trillium, some more wild leeks, some other kind of anemone than the one I’ve been seeing all spring, a really creepy wrinkled fungus, and lots of phlox. I took many, many pictures today but I wasted too much time trying to figure out what all these wildflowers were and now I am too tired to post all of those pictures. Tomorrow. But for now, here is the morel and some phlox.
Apparently, I shouldn’t have picked the morel because it’s not quite ripe yet.
I also shouldn’t have picked the phlox, because after a while I got tired of carrying it, so I stuck it in my hair, and then I forgot it was there, and at one point I thought I felt something in my hair, and so I patted the top of my head, and when I felt that there was ACTUALLY SOMETHING THERE I think I died a thousand silent deaths. You know how the deadly velvet petal-legged spider likes to perch on top of your head for a long time before it strikes without mercy. Also, before this, I kept marveling that even though there weren’t that many phlox blooming I could still smell them so clearly, having already forgotten about the one four inches away from my nose. Anyway.
For the next few hours, every single slightly wrinkly, non-green thing along the ground was a potential morel as far as I was concerned. Every unremarkable, monochrome scene like the one in the picture below was now a tantalizing mystery holding untold spoils of mushrooms. “Hey, maybe that thing is a mummified morel,” I reasoned with myself. That happens, maybe! Maybe it has living kin somewhere nearby if I just keep looking.
Quickly I realized that my plan — scour every inch of the forest floor — was stupid. So I turned to the internets for help in narrowing down my search. (Also pictured: Target bag that I’d hoped would soon be bulging with fungal finds.)
Oh well. This isn’t over yet.