Mr. Linton keeps saying "There's a fungus among us," while we work on inoculating logs.
My inner pun-generating machinery seems to be missing a cog, because all afternoon it's been hanging up on the near-relation of toadstool to footstool, shrooms to looms, shiitake and sciatica.
The process seems pretty straightforward: shiitake mushrooms love hardwood, and while we could get a chipper and grow mushrooms in a sterilized chipped-wood substrate, why not just inject a chunk of wood with "seed"?
Background info: living wood has a degree of anti-fungal protection, which is why dead tress are the ones really covered in mushrooms.
Will the apple log produce sweeter shrooms than the maple? Will bitternut finally find its ideal job on the farm? Stay tuned for these and other developments...
Each plug of spawn was topped with dollop of parafin wax (to keep moisture in and contaminants out). hen the log was filled and sealed, it went to a damp, shady corner of the farm to let the fungi do its collective thing.
We might see the first mushrooms sprouting as soon as the end of this summer.
A more realistic prediction is that the colony should be ready to start fruiting next summer. If the literature is correct, these logs should produce shiitake mushrooms for three to five years.
Mushroom soup, anyone?
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