Early season for Finland’s wild mushrooms and berries

Wild berries are ripening two or three weeks earlier than during most years. (iStock)
Mushrooms, including chanterelles, are ready for the picking in southern and central parts of the country.

Unusually, at the same time, blueberries are ripening in the same areas. Meanwhile the first cloudberries of the season have gone on sale at Ranua in southern Lapland.

This is something special – the chance to gather both mushrooms and berries in the forest at the same time. Wild berries are ripening two or three weeks earlier than during most years.

“Blueberries are already ripe. And, nationwide, the wild crop is expected to be better than usual,” says Rainer Peltola, a senior researcher at Natural Resources Institute Finland.

In contrast, lingonberries are still far from ready for picking. Judging from this year’s scant blossoms, the crop is likely to be smaller than average.

The much rarer cloudberries are ripening, though, and the first sales have already been made in the Ranua area of southern Lapland.

Thankful fungus friends

Another much sought-after delicacy, chanterelle mushrooms, are being found in abundance in the forests of southern and central regions.

“There seem to be plenty already in birch forests. There are lots of boletes in some places, too. As for other types, I can’t say just yet,” Peltola reports.

Overall the growing season is around three weeks ahead of average.

“Mushrooms are not all that dependent on sunlight and don’t follow the same growing season rules as do other plants. They are most influenced by rains and moisture,” explains Rainer Peltola. “It now looks as if there will be plenty of moisture on its way for the next few weeks. Summer vacationers might not like it, but our fungus friends will be thankful.”

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