Don't you just love Mushrooms?
Mushroom Omelet, Mushroom Quesadilla, Mushroom Gravy, Sautéed mushrooms in spaghetti sauce, Stuffed Mushrooms, Mushrooms on Pizza. I could go on and on.
We grew mushrooms years ago and they were so easy to grow. This year we are starting mushrooms on the Farm.
Shiitake Mushrooms to be exact.
Some people liken them to Lobster or Steak. When we get the large ones off the logs about 7 inches in diameter, I like to soak them in a little Salt water and then sauté' them, and just eat them like you would a steak with a salad and baked potato. They also have medicinal qualities check out http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shiitake
First we make sure we have healthy Oak logs, this one happens to be a scrub oak. We really don't want a tree bigger then 5-9 inches in diameter, this makes it easier to handle. Oak trees seem to last longer meaning they should produce for 5 or more years.
Once the tree is cut down, we cut it up into about 4 foot lenghs. Also making it easier to handle.
We put the log on Gary's homemade table, or you can put them across saw horse's.
We drill holes in a diamond shape pattern, then you start inserting the plugs with spawn on them into the holes.
Once you insert the plug you will need to use a mallet to pound it down into the log.
You then put a thin layer of wax over the plug so the spawn will start to eat on the log to produce mushrooms.We try to do this in the late winter or early spring so when they are outside they get a lot of rain water to keep them wet.
Just in case you want to know where we get our mushroom spawn check out http://www.mushroompeople.com/ They have other mushroom spawn also, check them out.