Truffles are specialised underground mushrooms that can only grow on the roots of particular trees.
One of the most prized for the dinner table is the French black truffle (Tuber melanosporum)
There are many different types of truffes across the world. Some are edible, some are not. One of the most prized for the dinner table is the French black truffle (Tuber melanosporum), which grows naturally in the wild in Europe and has now been established at Millgrove.
Truffles must grow on the roots of oaks or hazelnut trees or they will not survive. The germinating truffle spores send out long filaments that enter the tree roots to form a single root system that is part fungal and part plant. The tree delivers energy to the truffle while the truffle-tree roots explore the soil and gather water and nutrients for the tree. The relationship is symbiotic – meaning both the tree and the truffle benefit from working together.
During spring the truffle-tree roots start to set their subterranean fruit but how they do this remains a scientific mystery. The newly-formed truffles are microscopic and will take an impressive six months to grow and mature. Then, in the chilly days of early June, as the oak and hazelnut trees shed their autumn leaves, the first of the truffles will ripen and release their iconic aroma as they call out to be unearthed …
Millgrove Truffles Orchard