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Harvesting Chaga

Discussion in 'Harvesting' started by SuchMuch, Aug 3, 2016.

  1. SuchMuch

    SuchMuch Administrator

    St.Petersburg, Russia
    Local Time:
    11:45 AM
    Chaga could be harvested all year round, but the best time to harvest it is Spring and Autumn, the time when birch fungus is most active. Some ones prefer to harvest chaga in late Autumn or even in winter when trees are free from leaves and chaga mushroom could be easily spotted.

    Chaga could be of different shapes and forms:
    chaga_1.jpg chaga_2.jpg chaga_3.jpg chaga_4.jpg chaga_5.jpg chaga_6.jpg chaga_7.jpg chaga_8.jpg chaga_9.jpg chaga_10.jpg

    Chaga mushroom could be separated apart from birch tree by means of axe, strong knife or hammer.

    Loose yellow parts of chaga (parts close to tree) are subject to be removed with knife or axe:

    Harvester who doesn't have sufficient experience definitely will face problem of chaga identification. Know these funguses and outgrowths, they are not chaga and shouldn't be harvested and shouldn't be used the way birch fungus is used

    This link is not visible to you.
    willow_bracket_1.jpg willow_bracket_2.jpg willow_bracket_3.jpg willow_bracket_4.jpg willow_bracket_5.jpg

    This link is not visible to you.
    birch_polypore_1.jpg birch_polypore_2.jpg birch_polypore_3.jpeg birch_polypore_4.jpg birch_polypore_5.jpg birch_polypore_6.jpg
    It has shape of hoof and emits pleasant mushroom smell

    It must mentioned all above funguses are not poisonous, but there is no sense to use them the chaga way
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    Bur is a tree growth in which the grain has grown in a deformed manner. It looks like a chaga from a distance therefore it usually is mistaken with chaga mushroom
    bur_1.jpg bur_2.jpg bur_3.jpg bur_4.jpg bur_5.jpg bur_6.jpg bur_7.jpg

    Avoid harvesting birch fungus in vicinity of cities, roads with heavy traffic and in ecologically adverse areas. Be sure the forest you harvest chaga mushroom in is 100-200 kms away from plants, cities and large roads.

    The most curative chaga could be harvested from old live birches those are not younger then 10-15 years. The closer chaga to ground the less curative it is, chaga fungus growing at height 2-3 meters above ground should be collected.

    Never harvest chaga from dead and drying birches, chaga that has length 1-1,5 meters and crumbling/loose chaga which is completele black.

    Once chaga is harvested it subject to be splitted apart and dried as soon as possible. Fresh chaga is easily damaged by mould.