Edible Mushrooms, Pacific Northwest
The Conifer Coral Mushroom is found in the late summer and fall. We find them at higher elevations here on the BC coast. They are most common in wooded areas, especially conifer forests, and are usually found on the ground or on stumps and fallen logs. Some grow in open fields. They are not common but always a welcome sight as they are a very delicious mushroom.
Most are shaped like the ocean coral they are named after, with groups of stems that grow upward and branch out. Some, however, are shaped like upright worms, forks or clubs. Some varieties can be shaped like a cauliflower or lettuce head.
The ones in these photos are shaped like cauliflowers and are the ones we harvest up in the mountains of the BC coastal Region. Most conifer coral mushrooms are white to off white in color. They are a very pretty mushroom to see.
These are a choice mushroom and always a pleasure to find, slice and friend in butter till they begin to get a bit crispy and then serve as a side dish to pork chops. There is nothing better than this.
These mushrooms may offer more than great looks and awesome taste. Medical studies have been underway on this mushroom and they appear to have nerve regenerating properties, they may be able to stimulate nerve growth thus aiding those with cognitive impairments. Yesterday’s tasty mushroom may be part of tomorrow’s dementia treatment. Mushrooms offer so much to us, we are just beginning to learn the language of them, unlocking so much knowledge. Its a fascinating journey, this studying of mushrooms, the journey has just begun my friends.