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Fungally Loaded logs

 
Dwight Schrute
Posts: 1
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I have got an idea. For logs used in hugelkultur beds, wouldn't it be a good idea to load them with mushroom spawn to speed up decomposition (I.E plugs or thimbles). Would this work?
 
R Scott
Posts: 3305
Location: Kansas Zone 6a
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I do that by including already rotting logs.
 
Matu Collins
Posts: 1969
Location: Southern New England, seaside, avg yearly rainfall 41.91 in, zone 6b
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bee books chicken forest garden fungi trees
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If you've got extra fungal matter hanging around, yes, use it! You don't need to buy them though. I add scoops of forest soil from different places.
 
Brenda Groth
pollinator
Posts: 4434
Location: North Central Michigan
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i innoculated logs with fungii perfecti spawn plugs in 2012 and they never grew, had some help from neighbors last year and they cut down my half buried logs thinking they were stumps..bummer..so they are just laying on the ground now..I may just as well bury them in my next hugel bed..doubt if I'll get any mushrooms from them though
 
Landon Sunrich
pollinator
Posts: 1703
Location: Western Washington
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I've toyed around with this thought a bit. Last spring I procured a pure oyster mushroom rye spawn and proceeded by expanding it into 1) More rye 2) Canvas sacks full of straw 3)Alder Chips and 4) Alder Logs.

The alder log I took down as part of a thinning operation in a small timber growing fir last march. Mostly 6 inch or so diameter. I scuffed them up pretty well limbing them with a machete and also gave them some good gouges and stabs. Then in July I layered them over with colonized straw and woodchips taking care to peel back bark and poke in the live stuff. I've had them covered since and would give them a good soaking with water from time to time as well as watering the ground under them (the theory being that the evaporation rising from the ground into a shade-cloth covered pile would create a cooling hydrating mist). I checked in on them to make sure they where surviving the summer back in early october or so. They seemed to be kicking - lots of white rhizomorphic growth. I also got a few inky capish (but not quite) mushrooms growing out of the top straw layer but the oysters were clearly dominating the core. I've been living them alone - I was going to crack the pile open come spring (around when they start to fruit) and take a good peek in then. The pile is about the size of a truck bed stacked twice as high as it'd carry - the core of the pile was very active on last checking best humidity and temperature control. I have several thoughts as to what to do with them come spring (from what I saw of the core I have not doubt in them surviving until then) but am waiting to see. The last thing I want to do is load them BACK into a truck.

I've also though "Fungally Loaded logs" would be a great way to transition a conventional agricultural field to a permaculture based one. Using them along row or block margins (even if its just every 10 or 20 row at first and still tilled between 'um) They'd be a great help the first year or two as skids for when one needs to haul the heavy fall crops out of the fields, and after 5 or 8 years you could just smash um up to incorporate into the soil.
 
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