Q: Where are you and fellow foragers finding mushrooms right now?
A: Mushroom “hunters” are heading for the coastal habitats in Northern California and southwestern Oregon, where there is a colorful parade of fungus in the fall. The mushrooms will pop up in coastal forests and even at the edges of sand dunes.
Q: Favorite spot?
A: I really like picking black trumpets, so I’ll head into the Brookings area of Oregon.
Q: So how can people break into the foraging scene? Any tips for beginners?
A: I recommend taking a class at a horticultural club or joining your local mycological society first, then get outside. The best way to learn about mushrooms is out in the field, where you can hold them in your hand. Take proper hiking precautions and learn your trees, because mushrooms have very symbiotic relationships with them—for example, chanterelles are commonly found in Douglas fir forests. The golden rule is never eat anything you can’t identify with 100 percent certainty!