Morel, Morchella esculentoides
Morchellaceae or Morel Family


Cap egg-shaped, hollow, a few inches long, irregularly pitted. Ridges between pits yellowish, not darkening. Pits (where the spores form) yellow to brown, to nearly black, varying with age. Stem fat, whitish, hollow.

Especially common under white and green ash and apple trees and under dead or dying, American elms. May be saprobic (causing decay) or mycorrhizal (partnering with trees to provide minerals in exchange for sugars) at different stages in its life. Apparently rare in Wildwood.

A well known and choice edible. The few in Wildwood are, of course, property of all of us and thus protected.

This species is a yellow morel, one where the ridges do not darken. It is supposedly the most common and most widespread yellow morel in North America. However, from Illinois to Virginia, there is another species, M. cryptica, that looks identical and can only be identifed by DNA. What we have in Wildwood could be either or both.


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