Wednesday, January 7, 2015

a mushroom chronicle, part 4

So far, this chronicle has been devoted to the crocheted mushrooms I've made as yarn bombs. Clumps of three are still flourishing in our garden and our neighbor's garden, while single specimens may be found in pots and baskets from New York to Beverly Hills.

Today's mushroom chronicle takes us in a new direction -- to the live morel mushrooms which mysteriously appeared in our small herb and veggie garden after the post-Thanksgiving rain. Informed of their wholesomeness by diligent Internet research, we have consumed two or three small batches (sauteed in butter with garlic) and are eager for more. 

These specimens, photographed on January 4, look like they'll be ready soon:

I posted a modest announcement of the find on the California Message Board at on December 8: "Since the recent rains, we’re seeing morels in our Culver City veggie strip.Miffed at the total lack of responses to my post, I sent a more explicit email (with photos) to and hope to see evidence of it on their map, which shows only one Southern California sighting in 2014 (January 7 in a Laguna Woods planter, along with wood chips and roses).

Egotism was not the only reason for my surprise at the absence of accolades from the on-line morel community. Morels are such a rare and valuable commodity that I expected to be inundated with congratulations. "How valuable are they?" you may ask, especially if you don't live in one of the states where morels are seriously hunted every spring. In May (only May, it seems) morels are available fresh on line for $36.00 a pound at Wiebke Fur and Trading Company of La Crosse, WI. Dried, they are available year-round for $37.99 an ounce at D'Artagnan, a purveyor of truffles, caviar, and other costly foodstuffs, imported and domestic.

Though Steve and I have lived in states where morels grow wild, neither of us had tasted them until they appeared in our garden. We water them with our reclaimed rainwater and hope to keep them thriving for a long time.

Now I'm thinking about how to crochet some morels.
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POSToccupations by Frances Talbott-White is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License