Morel Foray - April 7, 2019

Foray Leader: Charlotte Caplan

25 keen morel hunters attended this foray in a lush, sheltered valley in the Smokies. A warm February had portended an early spring, but March had some relatively cooler spells with ample rainfall so we felt the timing should be about right. The day started cloudy, but a risk of rain did not materialise and we collected for 2 ½ hours in very pleasant conditions among the abundant wildflowers. At lunch we tallied our finds. Five people scored zero’s (the foray leader included), but several others found 10 or more, and we ended up with a more-than-respectable count of exactly 100 morels – all “yellows” (Morchella americana).


People had kept their eyes open for other fungi too and we found 13 species (not counting the morels) listed below. Nice finds were Verpa conica, a non-edible morel relative which we see only rarely, and Pluteus atromarginatus, a first record for the club. This proved easy to identify because the free pinkish gills that pronounced it as a Pluteus had, as the epithet suggests, distinctly dark edges.


Charlotte Caplan


Species List:


Cerioporus squamosus (= Polyporus squamosus)

Dryad’s Saddle

Cerioporus leptocephala (= Polyporus elegans)

Black-footed or Elegant Polypore

Ganoderma tsugae

Hemlock Varnish Shelf

Lenzites betulina

Gilled Polypore

Morchella americana

American Yellow Morel

Pleurotus ostreatus

Oyster mushroom

Pluteus atromarginatus


Pluteus sp. (prob. either P. cervinus or P. petastatus)


Psathyrella pseudovernalis

Spring Brittlestem

Stereum ostrea

False Turkey Tail

Trametes versicolor

Turkey Tail

Trichaptum biforme

Violet Toothed Polypore

Urnula craterium

Devil’s Urn

Verpa conica

Smooth Thimble mushroom