Jun 22

Shrooms

When the town asked permission to take down branches from my yard along the street, I said no. But when they took down an entire oak tree on the edge of my neighbor’s yard, I exclaimed “Yes!”

Freshly cut, hard wood oak was exactly what I needed! I called my neighbor, hoping that there wasn’t a long line of people in front of me who also wanted her cut-up logs (LOL), and soon thereafter I was carting home the perfect logs for my project – inoculating logs to cultivate shiitake mushrooms.

This is my first attempt at cultivating mushrooms, but I’m hopeful that it will be a success, and grateful for the extremely helpful and patient people at Field and Forest Products that walked me through the entire process and set me up with what I needed (in addition to the logs). Just in case you want to give it a try, here’s what you’ll need:

Freshly cut logs (no more than 3 months old) – Oak, Maple, Alder and American Beech all are recommended
Shiitake mushroom spores
Drill bit – the same size as the spores for a nice snug fit
Wax sealant – I used a cold wax that spreads without being heated

Thanks to Chip (husband and top notch mushroom-spore-hole-driller), we knocked off this project in just over 2 hours – including drilling each log in the recommended diamond pattern, inserting spores into each hole, sealing with wax, and setting up our finished logs in a shady humid place in the yard where they can sit above ground on an angle (so the rain drains off of them) to rest and grow.

Shroom-Blog

And now, we wait. There’s a chance we’ll have mushrooms to harvest come fall, but if not, certainly we’ll have them next spring. I will be sure to report back when they arrive and at that point we can talk about how a family of 4 is going to possibly consume so many mushrooms! I can’t wait!

Until then, eat clean live well!

Terry Walters

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