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Mushroom Identification Workshop

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Winecap mushrooms

Maine mushroom expert Greg Marley will instruct a class on how to correctly identify and sustainably collect edible mushrooms at Merryspring Nature Center on Saturday, August 18 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Maine’s meadows and forests offer a wide variety of mushrooms revered for their flavor and medicinal benefits. While hunger for gourmet fungi encourages most to collect mushrooms, the curious may be interested in their health benefits and important ecological function. Before entering the field, it is quite important for mushroom foragers to have the knowledge and confidence to distinguish good edible mushrooms from toxic ones. There are a handful of common, easily identified, great edibles that can satisfy most people’s hunger for mushrooms.

Beginning with the basics, Marley will guide participants through all of the important aspects to mushroom foraging in a combined lecture and outdoor experience. After a look into the identification features and ecology of mushrooms, the presentation will move outside to the Merryspring grounds to identify edible and poisonous mushrooms, collect samples, and end the day by cooking some of the mushrooms found.

The cost of this one-day workshop will be $60 for members and $65 for non-members. Due to limited space of 25 guests, pre-registration and payment is required. Foragers are reminded to wear comfortable shoes and weather-appropriate clothing. To register, please contact Merryspring at 236-2239 or info@merryspring.org

Marley has been collecting, studying, eating, growing and teaching mushrooms for over 35 years. He has spread his love of mushrooms to hundreds through walks, talks and classes held across the state over the past 20 years. He is the founder of Mushrooms for Health, a small company providing medicinal mushroom education and products made with Maine medicinal mushrooms. Marley is the author of Mushrooms for Health; Medicinal Secrets of Northeastern Fungi (Downeast Books, 2009) and the award-winning Chanterelle Dreams, Amanita Nightmares; The Love Lore and Mystic of Mushrooms (Chelsea Green, 2010). He also is a volunteer mushroom identification and poisoning consultant to poison centers across New England, a frequent lecturer to college groups, and a mushrooming foray faculty member. When not mushrooming, Marley is a clinical social worker and behavioral health consultant.

Merryspring is a member-supported, non-profit nature education center and park located at the end of Conway Road just off Rt. 1 by the Hannaford shopping plaza in Camden. For more information, call Merryspring at 236-2239 or visit the website at www.merryspring.org