Hey, I live in Raleigh. Used to live in more eastern NC. I've never actually been on a hunt to find mushrooms until the other day. I saw a lady collecting morels on an NC outdoors sporting type show. Must still be a bit early.
I live in Greenville. I've only hunted seriously for about the last few years and only found them in 2012. I found about 150 small ones but that was with many many hours of searching over the course of a month. My first find was March 26th and the last was about April 25th with the peak in mid April. I looked hard last year in the same spots and didn't ever find a single one, I think maybe it warmed up too early last year. Us being this close to the ocean just doesn't seem to be the best habitat for them, as people to the west and north seem to have a much easier time finding them. If you want to find them around here it seems that it takes a whole lot of effort and a whole lot of luck.
I had two areas where I found them. Both are relatively close to a good sized creek. Close to the creek there are lots of cypress trees and the morels don't seem to grow there. But as you move away from the creek it switches from cypress to hardwood mix (elms, maples, and tulip poplars). Above and beyond the best thing I've found to look for is Tulip Poplars. In fact just about every morel I found that year were relatively close to tulip poplars. South facing slopes with a decent amount of shade in these areas seems to be best. Of course, that same year, two friends of mine who also live in Greenville found two GIANT morels (7 inches tall and 4 inches wide) growing on their property. They were growing basically in sand next to a telephone pole in full sun, so who knows. I guess it just shows that the morels don't follow the rules that we try to assign them.
I've only been out hunting once this season, a few days ago, and didn't see any. It rained a little a couple days before but he soil still seemed a little dry. All the cold we've had might have delayed their arrival. So, I'm hoping that now that it has warmed up a lot, that we just need a good hard rain for them to pop! But, then again, Who knows? Hope this helps!
Well I just got back from at least a 3 hr hunt and still found nothing! Not even any small ones. My wife was with me also, so we had 2 sets of eyes scouring the area where we found lots last year. I think it is still too early! Ground is very dry which concerns me. Also, I don't think the ground has gotten warm enough yet. We are not even going out tomorrow now since we so no sign of any today. Will scout a few of my areas next Wednesday or Thursday to see if next weekend will be bountiful!
Spent a couple hours today out in Chatham county. Looked around creek beds, north and south facing slopes, around all the right kinds of trees. Found nothing. Ground temperatures around 54 degrees and fairly dry. Will try again in a few days.
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