Weather Updates

Morel of the week

| For Sun-Times Media

| For Sun-Times Media

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Updated: June 12, 2011 12:30AM

Folk wisdom says morels should pop when May
apples bloom and oak leaves are the size of a squirrel’s ear. This spring, the adage shows the climate range of Chicago outdoors.

‘‘May apples are up, but the oaks at ‘The Garden’ aren’t doing much yet,’’ Greg Mueller, the vice president for science and academic programs for the Chicago Botanic Garden, said Monday.

The cool spring (until now) has slowed the spread of morels north. South of Interstate 80, morels have been found for a couple of weeks.

‘‘But [I haven’t] heard much in the metro area,’’ Mueller said. ‘‘I think things should pop soon.’’

I’ve had my best spring for morels. Our youngest son, 6, and I found morels on six of the first eight days of May. Since May 1, more Morel of the Week
nominations have arrived than in any other spring.

Ben Bultema of Ukrainian Village, who pitched the MOTW idea two years ago, had an update from
southeastern Cook County.

‘‘My wife, Leanna, and I and our friends Jon and Lex Huckabay just got out morel hunting for the first time this year and found some [above],’’ he e-mailed last week. ‘‘Actually, it was Lex who found them, and it was her first time morel hunting. Not a lot, but a decent-size patch. Nothing around our secret spots, though.’’

It’s secret time.

Dale Bowman

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