For Michigan and much of the upper Midwest and Northeast, May marks the beginning of the six-month mushroom-hunting season and is heralded by a unique cast of tasty fungi. I recently received an email from the Michigan Mushroom Hunter's Club that listed the 26 species of common macrofungi that can be found in May. This list comes from a 1986 article by Walt Sturgeon entitled "May in Michigan Means Morels and More", which is what my alliterative header pays homage to. I wanted to share the list here, both as a phenological resource as well as a reference of edibility. The names are updated to reflect current taxonomy:
I have been going to the woods as often as I can - two to three times a week - to catch sight and fill my basket with spring mushrooms. Morchella spp. (morels), the holiest of spring mushrooms for mycophagists, is my target. Along the way, I hope to find Helvella spp. and Gyromitra spp. These are all large, fleshy ascomycetes. Recently, I got a copy of Ascomycete Fungi of North America: A Mushroom Reference Guide by Beug, Bessette, and Bessette. The beautiful images in this book have inspired me to find more ascomycetes and not just the large gilled and pored species of Basidiomycota.
The material on aldendirks.com is presented for general informational and educational purposes only, and under no circumstances is to be considered a substitute for identification of an actual biological specimen by a person qualified to make that judgment. Some fungi are poisonous; please be cautious. All images on this website are licensed under Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0).