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Mushroom picking: general rules and tips for a beginner mushroom picker


Mushroom picking is a fun and rewarding experience. "Silent hunting" allows not only to diversify the diet, but also to make preparations for the winter period.

Mushroom picker tips for mushroom picking

Novice mushroom pickers can be advised to collect only tubular varieties, among which there are no deadly mushrooms. The most common, highly nutritious and very popular tubular species among mushroom pickers include fruit bodies of white or boletus, boletus and boletus, as well as butter.

Some types of tubular fruiting bodies are not collected by mushroom pickers. due to low nutritional value or unpleasant taste. Occurring conditionally poisonous species lose their toxicity during prolonged and repeated heat treatment. The mushroom broth obtained as a result of cooking is utilized and not used for food purposes.

Learning to correctly distinguish between poisonous and edible varieties of agaric is much more difficult. The most toxic and deadly dangerous species represented by fly agarics and pale grebe belong to the category of lamellar fruit bodies. Important to remember, that it is strictly forbidden to collect fruit bodies that are old, rotten and damaged by insects or worms, in which an increased amount of toxic substances is noted.

Mushrooms growing near busy roads, in urban areas, next to industrial enterprises are not suitable for food. In this case, the mushroom pulp may contain a significant amount of radioactive elements, heavy metals or lead. Among other things, you need to remember that folk remedies, including silver items, onions and garlic, as well as milk, do not allow to determine toxicity with absolute accuracy.

How and where to look for mushrooms

Mushroom picking time in Russia

The mushroom season in our country is a variable concept and is very dependent on soil and climatic conditions. March is the most non-fungal month, but already in April and May fruit bodies of morels, May or St. George fungus, as well as the usual brown boletus appear.

The onset of summer is marked by the appearance of porcini mushrooms, boletus, butterflies, as well as boletus, and in August the third mushroom layer begins. At this time, fruiting bodies of several tens of edible varieties are formed. The peak of the mushroom season in our country occurs in September and the first decade of October. It should be noted, that the main natural factors, which are represented by humidity and temperature, have a special effect on the growth and period of active fruiting.

When mushrooms are harvested in Ukraine

Soil and climatic conditions in Ukraine are very favorable for the growth and development of fruiting bodies of many types of mushrooms. More than two hundred species of edible mushrooms grow here, but only 10%, or about twenty of the most famous and popular varieties, are especially popular with experienced connoisseurs of "silent hunting".

The season of active fruiting of mushrooms starts in the first summer month. It was during this period that a large number of russules and moss-loops appeared. From the first decade of July, you can harvest a boletus boletus and boletus, mushrooms and butterflies, chanterelles and ceps. Ripening of forest raspberries, blackberries and blueberries can serve as a temporary guideline. However, the most fruitful months for mushrooms are August and September. And already in October there is an active gathering of mushrooms, valuev and mushrooms.

What you need to know about mushroom picking in the forest

Compliance with the rules for collecting mushrooms can not only minimize the risk of poisoning, but also helps to preserve the reproduction of mycelium in subsequent years.

Mushrooms gather in the early morning, even before the moment when their aboveground part warms up by the sun's rays. Such fruiting bodies last as long as possible. You cannot pick overgrown or old mushrooms. Stack fruit bodies in a wicker basket more precisely with their hats down. This method of transportation allows them to be stored best. Only well-known varieties must be collected.

In too rainy summers, fruiting bodies are very saturated with water, as a result of which the flesh becomes watery, loose and decaying. Such mushroom flesh becomes unsuitable for eating. Fruit bodies collected and brought home are immediately cleaned of adhering particles of soil, foliage and needles, as well as grass and other plant debris. It is also mandatory to remove all parts that are affected by insect larvae. Parts of heavily soiled feet are cut off.

Only young mushrooms with a fairly dense pulp are used as food. It is advisable to dip peeled mushrooms for about an hour in cold salted water, after which they should be processed and subjected to reliable heat treatment as soon as possible. The basic rule that must be followed when collecting fruiting bodies remains the same - you can only collect well-known and benign species that can be used for food without fear.

How to pick mushrooms

In search of mushroom spots in the forest

Edible, with high nutritional value mushrooms can be found in a variety of places, so you can optionally go on a "silent hunt" in the forest. The fruiting bodies of edible species actively grow and develop at the edges, as well as glades, in copses and low forbs. The mushroom picker can grow well, so you can find fruiting bodies in places where high yields were noted in past years.

Each variety is characterized by the ability to form mycorrhiza with certain plant species. For example, in young and older pine plantations, porcini mushrooms very abundantly bear fruit, as well as birch bark mushrooms, russula several varieties, and even brown boletuses traditional for our country. In spruce forests, mushrooms and chanterelles, forest mushrooms and russules most often grow. And in humid enough floodplain forests with not very good lighting, edible mushrooms and morels form fruiting bodies. Among meadow grasses and pastures, common champignon and meadow mushroom bear fruit.

What forest mushrooms should not be put in a basket

Only experienced mushroom pickers can independently distinguish edible species from inedible or poisonous varieties. It must be remembered that not only the most famous fly agarics and grebes can be poisonous, but also the so-called double mushrooms or false mushrooms, resembling such valuable varieties as porcini mushrooms, honey mushrooms, butterflies and chanterelles. The following species are among the most dangerous mushrooms for human life and health:

  • death capoccurring from the first ten days of August until the end of September;
  • false fox or orange talkeroccurring from the first decade of July until mid-October;
  • false honeymeeting from the first days of summer until mid-October;
  • fly agaricoccurring from the middle of the last summer month until mid-September;
  • satanic mushroomoccurring from the first summer days until the onset of a steady autumn cooling;
  • russula is burning-causticoccurring from mid-summer to mid-autumn;
  • lactarius gray pinkoccurring from the last summer decade until the onset of a steady fall in the cold;
  • grate redgrowing in forests from the last spring decade until the onset of autumn;
  • hymnopilus beautifulgrowing from the last decade of the first summer month until mid-September;
  • Valuy false, growing from the first decade of the last summer month until the end of September.

In addition, overgrown or wormy fruiting bodies, which can cause poisoning and problems with the gastrointestinal tract, cannot be collected and used for food purposes. Excessively soaked mushroom pulp may indicate severe overgrowth or damage to fruiting bodies. In the process of such natural decay, the formation of substances harmful to human health can occur, including the poison nerin, which makes mushrooms poisonous.

Picking mushrooms in the forest in winter

There are not too many connoisseurs of winter edible mushrooms in our country. Nevertheless, even in winter there is an opportunity to collect tasty and healthy fruiting bodies of several types:

  • winter mushrooms are quite tasty mushrooms, but requiring mandatory preliminary heat treatment. Fruit bodies are found in the first decade of winter, and grow abundantly on stumps and fallen deciduous wood including aspen and poplar. This edible appearance is characterized by a bright yellow hat and relatively dense pulp;
  • winter oyster mushroom it is difficult to confuse with other varieties, which is due to the very characteristic leg located on the side, smoothly turning into a hat. Young oyster mushrooms very much resemble in appearance ordinary sea shells of light gray or a little brownish-brown color. Oyster mushrooms grow in groups, have a pleasant taste and aroma.

Interesting facts about mushrooms

With the onset of winter, if frosty days have come early enough, autumn species that are typical for our soil and climatic zone can be found in the forest, represented by several types of rows, an autumn opencoat, a sulfur-yellow tinder and a scaly tinder. It is possible to collect them only before the very first thaws. It is important to remember that after thawing and with the onset of subsequent frosts, the mushroom pulp will completely lose all its taste and nutritional qualities.