So here is an update on my morel bed that was constructed a few months back. But unfortunately, this is an update that I am not particularly happy about. So the bed was only inoculated with a block of morel mycelium, for I had only planned to have morel mushrooms in the bed, but it seems like we have some volunteer mushrooms, and I have no idea whether to be concerned or not. On the 31st of May, I decided to check the bed to see how it was looking (of course I was not expected morels, for the mycelium had only been put in the bed this season,) and I was very surprised/perplexed by what I found; the bed had some sort of ‘cup’ fungi fruiting in the compost. They are like any other mushroom, but to the untrained eye they might not seem like it. Instead of having a cap and stalk, they grow in a cup shape directly from their substrate, and they have a gel like flesh that is easily damaged.
Anyways, I am not super surprised to see them. First, the medium we inoculated with the mycelium was not sterilized or pasteurized in any way, for I thought that an microbial environment would be more natural for the morel mycelium, meaning the spores of these different mushrooms could have already been in the medium we used. Second, after doing some research I think these cup mushroom are in the Peziza genus of fungi, which I learned is very found of woody mediums that has been burned, which is very similar to what Morchella species like to fruit on. So all the medium we added to the bed, was pretty perfect for the Peziza fungi, despite it being meant for the morels. I will need to conduct more research to see if they have the potential to out compete the morel mycelium, but I cannot know anything for sure till we expect morel mushroom next spring.
Plant and Prosper!