[NAFEX] Mushrooms

Darel Snodgrass dareljudy at bellsouth.net
Sat Apr 30 21:46:02 EDT 2011

I did plug spawn of shiitake several years ago, kit from Fungi Perfecti, 
was after a big windstorm in the area so lots of free oak logs around.  
Had about 10 3-foot logs, 8-12 in. diameter, as I recall.  We got 
mushrooms starting in about 6 months, produced pretty regularly for 
about 3 years, at which point the logs virtually disintegrated (still 
find one sometimes in that corner of the yard). WAY more than we could 
eat fresh, we dried a lot and gave a LOT away.

We're in the south (Memphis) so logs stayed pretty damp anyway (north 
side of house in the shade), sprinkled them down about once a week, less 
in spring, more in late summer.  If I was serious I would set up a 
drip-irrigation/mist system on a timer, like in the garden.  I've seen 
commercial systems with tractors/tanks - too much work for a household, 
maybe cost-effective for commercial prodution. 

One thing - here in the humid mid-south, our biggest pest was slugs;  
they riddled the mushrooms.  My wife had a brilliant idea - we built 
some platforms for the logs, and tacked surplus flattened copper 
plumbing pipe around the bases - slugs won't crawl over copper.   Quick 
steel -wool  scrubbing when it tarnished - worked well.

Like to try it on a larger basis sometime, now that I've got some woods 
- if only I had some more time!



Richard Moyer wrote:

>Last NAFEX talk (or two) I did, included pics of oyster mushrooms on
>poplar logs, to broaden thinking about 'fruit'.  Not to rock the boat,
>but do the NAFEX bylaws (or protocol on this list) allow discussion of
>fruit from the fungal kingdom, or merely the plant kingdom?
>Been inoculating and growing mushrooms around 10 years.  Great way to
>grow fruit in the shade, and in the fall, winter (some years) and
>early spring.  We're expanding our range of oyster and shiitake
>production, due primarily to farmers market and chef demand.
>Easy to get into at any level, lots of info available.  I encourage
>you to find a company and a person there who's been at it for years,
>and have an extended conversation.  Oysters are very easy to begin
>with; share your interests and goals by phone, and they can suggest
>inoculation strategies to get started.  Note that 2.2 lbs is only a
>few dollars less than 5.5 lbs of spawn inoculant; we often share an
>order to hold down costs.  Plugs easier in practice, but more costly
>in potential yield per dollar invested.  Contact me offlist and will
>let you know the companies we have experience with.
>Richard Moyer
>gathered morels last evening, enjoyed wilted lettuce with duck confit
>and shiitakes day before
>Doreen wrote:
>Does anyone grow their own mushrooms?  Do you use plugs or inoculant?  I
>>love oyster mushrooms and came across wooden plugs that you place in holes
>>drilled in a tree stump.  I'm thinking of ordering the plugs.  The same
>>company has inoculated kits available, too.  After three or four harvests,
>>they say you can spread the kit over your compost pile and mushrooms will
>>thrive.  That's an option too.
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