Just wanted to post a little update: We have our 2023 class schedule live now! Head on over to the classes page for full details. Shiitake logs are popping off new buttons, stinging nettle has raised its young stingy shoots from the ground, and other friends such as creasy greens, day Lilly, sheep sorrel, violet, comfrey, and jewel weed are all waking up a bit early this year!
We have added ramp seeds to our store, and yes, you can grow them in a regular garden too! If you are wanting to help establish a new patch of ramps, or help regenerate an old, planting by seed is one of the easiest methods to re establish, or establish ramps in a given area. With proper conditions and a little patience, in about 5 years (sometimes even less!) you will have your own patch to harvest from, and to share with the future generation. This year we have over 16,000 ramp seeds that we will be sewing, selling, and sharing with our communities, in an effort to be proactive about our love for ramps! As long as you are educating and practicing sustainability, there is no reason that we should feel guilt about correctly and reverently harvesting ramps for our tables. Ramps are hands down one of our all time favorite foods and each year we gleefully look forward to ramp season. Additionally We have added a link to NC State Extensions ramp planting article in our menu under the “Log, Planting & Mushroom info” for anyone looking for a handy reference on how to best start your ramp patch.
A quick word of caution: When ramps are in their youngest stages, they can have some toxic frequently mistaken others, or look-a-likes. Please always to be 120% sure of what you are eating, and when in doubt, ask someone who knows!
Also with this early spring, snakes are early too! be sure to exercise caution when frolicking in the forest for our dear friend the copperhead snake. She loves the same environments that morels and ramps do, so always be on the watch as they are quite venomous, and even worse, you don’t even want to know how much that anti venom costs!! Luckily most people don’t even need the anti venom, but it can take months to fully recover from a bite. The copperhead is typically a docile snake unless it is being stepped upon, so just watch where you are going.
And with that, I’m going to go and sterilize the mushroom lab! We are working on inoculating some red oak rounds with some Hen of the Woods, so if you are looking to add to your mushroom log collection, keep an eye out in a few months as we will have about 12 Maitake logs available to start.
Get outside and don’t forget to eat your mushrooms,
After many months of training, practicing, and hunting, Our sweet pup Eva finally has found her first Truffle! We are SOOOO proud of her!
Eva is a Lagotto Romangolo that came to us all the way from Serbia, specifically King of the Truffles Kennel. We then did a number of training classes with the Truffle Dog Company. Victoria is an amazing teacher and together her and Alana have been so helpful to us on our truffling journey.
The species of truffle we have found so far is called the Imaia Gigantea. Imaia is pronounced “ee-ma-ee-uh” as the truffle is named after the Japanese mycologist, Sanshi Imai. So far, this truffle has only been found in the Appalachian mountains, and Japan.
Back in February Luke and I had read this article on Outside magazine online and immediatley knew that truffle hunting in our backyard was something we definitely were interested in doing. We then ordered Rowan Jacobsens book Truffle Hound, and when it arrived we couldn’t put it down. Soon thereafter Eva had arrived to our doorstep at 3am brought to us from a kind pet nanny from Romania. Eva integrated into our little family with ease, and we couldn’t be happier with our little truffle hunter.
If your curiosity is peaked, you can come and smell the truffle salt or purchase truffle from us at our farmers markets, or go visit our friends at Red Fiddle Vittles.
This is just the beginning for Eva on her truffle journey! Tuber Lyonii & Tuber Canaliculatum both can be found in our region, so the hunt is on! Eva celebrated her first birthday this September and has a lot to learn before her skills will be on par with the big dogs. She is still a puppy for a bit longer and it’s so cute watching her skills blossom.
Hello! If you have come on any walks, hikes, or visit us at any of your markets we may have recommended you certain books to read. Here is the list of our top 11 favorite foraging books that can help you on your journey, like they did us!
Mushrooms of the Southeast by Todd F. Elliott & Steven L. Stephenson
Mushrooms of the Carolinas by Alan E. Bessette , Arleen R. Bessette, Michael W. Hopping
All That the Rain Promises and More: A Hip Pocket Guide to Western Mushrooms by David Arora
Mushroom Demystified by David Arora
100 Edible Mushrooms by Michael Kuo
How to Forage Mushrooms Without Dying by Frank Hyman
Organic Mushroom Cultivation and Mycoremediation by Tradd Cotter
The Fungal Pharmacy by Robert Rogers (Author), Solomon P. Wasser (Foreword)
Foragers Harvest by Samuel Thayer
Incredible Wild Edibles by Samuel Thayer
Trees of Power by Akiva Silver