• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources the cider press projects digital market permies.com private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • James Freyr
  • Nicole Alderman
  • Anne Miller
  • r ranson
  • Mike Jay Haasl
  • Dave Burton
  • Pearl Sutton
stewards:
  • paul wheaton
  • Joylynn Hardesty
  • Joseph Lofthouse
garden masters:
  • Steve Thorn
gardeners:
  • Dan Boone
  • Carla Burke
  • Kate Downham

SHIITAKE

 
Posts: 125
Location: Gold Coast Hinterland QLD, Australia
3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Here's some I grew in bags:






 
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Grown inside? I thought they needed light or the stems would be too fat. They don't look fat in the pic.
 
Mat Smith
Posts: 125
Location: Gold Coast Hinterland QLD, Australia
3
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Inside in a 'mini-greenhouse' using an strip of LED lights on for 12 hrs a day
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
How do people deal with frost? Does it effect shiitakes at all? I've got a handful of logs that are fruiting & I wonder if I need to protect them at all. I think it's unlikely to actually get to 32 where the shiitakes are by a stream, but it'd be good info to know.
 
Posts: 7088
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
1092
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Cj Verde wrote:How do people deal with frost? Does it effect shiitakes at all? I've got a handful of logs that are fruiting & I wonder if I need to protect them at all. I think it's unlikely to actually get to 32 where the shiitakes are by a stream, but it'd be good info to know.



I think I would throw a light sheet over them if there was a frost expected....I think our shade house serves that purpose. i don't think they take a freeze well at all but maybe a light frost is OK. we have had them stop growing after pinning when the weather got into the thirties at night.
we have a few more of the cold weather strain producing now but our wide range strain did nothing this year....not sure why, it wasn't that cool of a summer.
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Here's a reply from the Mushroom Growers Listserve I'm on:

Light frosts are not a concern to shiitake mushrooms. This time of year
just slows down the periods between forcing and harvest time...mushrooms
just hang on the logs for a few weeks as they develop slowly. This is a
time of year we make use of fruiting blankets, tarps and ag cloth to try to
keep cool temps. This afternoon we threw fruiting blankets over developing
pins and clear plastic tarps over mushrooms closer to being develop to keep
them a wee bit warmer as our temps will dip into the upper 30's tonight.
Last year we were able to continue forcing cycles well into October with
favorable temperatures...but this year we may quit earlier as the temps seem
unseasonably cool. We will continue small forcings of 50 logs each week to
have some shiitake...s but it becomes harder to manage logs when the temps
are so cool.



I think I'll try forcing some in my hoop house.
 
Judith Browning
Posts: 7088
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
1092
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
a change in the weather (temperature and plenty of rain at the same time) brought on another flush of our cool weather strain...about two gallons. Not a peep out of West Wind, a wide range strain that we have found really reliable in the past. One stack of the WW was plugged a year ago March and one just this past March......we would normally have a few even from the most recently plugged stack.
So far, and this is our first year NOT soaking at all, we are happy with the amount of mushrooms we are getting.......all dependent on rain though. They are easy to pick from an open crib stack and we aren't missing all of that extra lifting and moving logs to soak and then restack.
These were sopping wet when I brought them in so I stemmed them and put the caps straight into the dehydrator.
008.JPG
[Thumbnail for 008.JPG]
 
Judith Browning
Posts: 7088
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
1092
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Cj Verde wrote:Grown inside? I thought they needed light or the stems would be too fat. They don't look fat in the pic.



I just got to wondering what's wrong with fat stems? I thought maybe the light was for other reasons also, I know I have heard that they need more once they are fruiting. We end up trimming the stem off completely most of the time because they are usually tough and sometimes I dry them separately and use after powdering in soups, etc.
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Judith Browning wrote:I just got to wondering what's wrong with fat stems?



If, big if, the fat stems come at the expense of smaller caps than you wouldn't want fat stems.
 
Posts: 98
Location: BC Interior, zone 5a
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Dale,
Shiitake has the least aggressive mycelium of pretty much all edible mushrooms, the conditions need to be right for success. Shiitakes come from clone, they barely have the ability to make viable spores. Fresh cut red alder is the best choice for all edibles and medicinals on the coast except for maybe chicken of the woods. Big leaf maple will work for oysters. Slugs and fungus gnats love mushrooms out in the open. There is a local reishi that is superb medicine, looks like Asian reishi, shiny brown. Turkey tails deserve more attention, they are good medicine and the #2 most studied med mushroom after reishi. The reishi and turkey tails are pretty easy to grow, nice aggressive mycelium.
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Cee Ray wrote:Dale,
Shiitake has the least aggressive mycelium of pretty much all edible mushrooms, the conditions need to be right for success. Shiitakes come from clone, they barely have the ability to make viable spores.



And yet... I've just started listening to this podcast and they mention a strain of shiitakes that has been developed to grow on coffee grounds!!!
 
Cee Ray
Posts: 98
Location: BC Interior, zone 5a
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
there's also shiitakes that will grow on straw, but these are usually very specific strains that cost around 100 bucks for a petri dish.. requires a clean room, pressure cooker, etc.. logs are way easier for beginners..
 
Posts: 103
Location: Zone 5, Maine Coast
8
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Cj, thanks for the inspiring pictures!
Cee ray-
I've found shitake to be a medium-aggressive colonizer. I've had no trouble expanding sawdust spawn, cloning wooden plugs on agar, or expanding dowel spawn on to wood chips. Maybe commercial strains from the supermarket are hard to work with, but I've had few failures with fungi perfecti and field and forest products. If anything, I think f&f might have be a little more aggressive, but they both colonize just fine.
You just need a clean space and to follow sterile procedure. It takes a little practice but it's very doable.
 
Posts: 2
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Awesome pics! *jealous*
 
gardener
Posts: 2693
183
forest garden fungi trees books food preservation bike
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I just had my first fruiting of shiitakes on logs. I'm pretty excited. They waited 2 years on the first inoculation, but I inoculated more last fall. Parts of both fruited about a week or two ago. A big difference ssems to be covering them during our very long and dry summers. I cut up pallets and nailed cardboard over them to cover the shiitakes from direct sun, even though they were in a mostly shaded area. It also made their area more humid. I uncover them during the late fall to late spring, when they will get more rain and less sun.
John S
PDX OR
Shiitakes-from-logs-here-10-14.JPG
[Thumbnail for Shiitakes-from-logs-here-10-14.JPG]
shiitakes from logs
 
Judith Browning
Posts: 7088
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
1092
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
nice, John S. What variety are you growing? I wonder if maybe they were shaded too much with the pallets and cardboard and that is why they took two years?..........Ours have some shade cloth but they still get quite a bit of light. A bit of a trade off though, because then they also dry out quicker. We try to keep the newly plugged logs covered with blankets,etc. for a few months but just the shade cloth from the next spring onward.

We have had several more 'flushes' of the bellwether strain that we plugged in march of 2013....but not a peep out of the west wind that was plugged at the same time and it had been our reliable strain ever since we started plugging logs ten years ago....so it looks like it may be taking 2 years to produce, as I know it won't do anything over the winter. It usually would produce some mushrooms in the fall of the same year we plugged.
I have been laying really old, spent logs in the paths of my kitchen garden and moving the soil from the beds over on top of them.
I hadn't finished covering all of the logs and found those three shiitakes in this picture today. ...the logs were hardly holding together they were so far gone, I am surprised at them producing anything at all.
IMG_1765.JPG
[Thumbnail for IMG_1765.JPG]
a few shiitakes on old, spent buried logs
 
John Suavecito
gardener
Posts: 2693
183
forest garden fungi trees books food preservation bike
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I am growing West Wind. They are supposed to be slightly better for our summer droughts. They received more sun last year when they didn't fruit than this year, when I blocked more sun and they finally fruited, both the 1 year old and the 2 year old inoculations. The other difference is that I put bubble wrap or tarps over them to make them more humid as well. I think you probably have rain and humidity in the summer, like where the shiitake are native. We don't. It's dry with no humidity for many months.
John S
PDX OR
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Judith Browning wrote:...the logs were hardly holding together they were so far gone, I am surprised at them producing anything at all.


Moving them probably reactivated them. That's why people say to hit them with a mallet after shocking - to wake them up.

I just got another flush - maybe the last one for the year bringing the total up to almost 21 lbs.

If my energy holds today I hope to cut down some small paper birch to inoculate this weekend. The people from Field and Forest said if you keep them inside at around 70° with plastic around it to keep the moisture high (but with some air flow) they should be ready to fruit by spring. I think birch inoculates quicker than some of the harder woods. They should look great and I bet I can sell them at the farmers market, particularly if they are pinning or actually fruiting.
 
Judith Browning
Posts: 7088
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
1092
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator


Moving them probably reactivated them. That's why people say to hit them with a mallet after shocking - to wake them up.



well, I did kind of bang them around a bunch moving them and dropped them in place but it was early summer and they've been sitting quietly ever since...I think it was probably the rain and then cold snap. They are in full sun also in this garden but holding moisture nicely because they are packed in soil. I forgot about the mallet thing...I should go out and beat on our west wind that just haven't got it together to produce this year.
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
And keep your eyes peeled for shiitakes coming up from the ground around the logs. That's what Sepp says anyway. Something to remember next spring.
 
Judith Browning
Posts: 7088
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
1092
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Judith Browning wrote:We are just starting to get some handfuls of shiitakes off of logs we plugged a year ago March with a cold weather strain called 'bellwether'....fortunately we are having a cool really wet spring and they are pinning nicely. The wide range strain, 'west wind' that we plugged at the same time as the bellwether are not showing any signs of pinning yet. It is different every year. depending on the weather....usually the west winds have produced by now....

I thought more shiitake growers might want to share pictures as their logs produce.
Here's to some great eating!



as embarrassing as it is, I have to admit that when I began this thread I reversed what I thought were stacks of bellweather and wide range strains. We had one of the stacks begin fruiting this week while the temps were upper thirties and low forties....I checked our labels more carefully and found that stack IS the bellweathers and they truly fruit in 'cold' weather.
I had only read our label on one or two logs, for some reason we had mixed a few of the logs on top of the stacks.
So, it is the Bellweather strain that is just now fruiting and the Wide Range fruited beautifully just as it always had during warm weather
 
Judith Browning
Posts: 7088
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
1092
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
This is one big sign of spring for us...early shiitakes.....the biggest one is a double and measures 5"X6". It was lunch Wide Range variety. I am looking at the tags this time!

We aren't soaking and are really happy with the logs cribbed up and just slipping the mushrooms out as they form...no more moving logs to the soak tank. Lot's of spring rains make it happen.
IMG_2046.png
[Thumbnail for IMG_2046.png]
 
steward
Posts: 3997
Location: Montana
344
fungi books food preservation bee
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
A few weeks ago my friends and I visited Far West Fungi Farms. They are an organic specialty mushroom farm and they grow all their mushrooms in saw dust bricks and then once they harvest the mushrooms they put all the bricks into a giant pile and so people can come pick up the recycled bricks because they can totally get two more harvests out of them!

So We loaded up a bunch of bricks in the back of my car and set them up. I am super new to mushrooms so I sorta assumed they would fail.. I know, I shouldn't think like that but it's just the truth. So I set up my little bed with cardboard and wood chips underneath.. and then BAM only a few days later I had shiitakes fruiting like crazy! needless to say, I am proud of the little guys and hopefully will get some more out of them.


Here is my little bed:



Here is one of the tour guides Kent talking with the steam rolling off the mushroom piles in the background. Love this one.



Here is everyone sifting through the massive piles of sawdust bricks picking the best ones to bring home.



We packed the back of my suv completely full. It was awesome.



Oh, and for fun here's me with some crazy looking mushrooms.. Can't remember what these ones were. I thought I remembered someone saying they were trumpets but now I am doubting myself so I am not sure.



 
pollinator
Posts: 1027
Location: Longbranch, WA
141
goat tiny house rabbit wofati chicken solar
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
My neighbor got trailer loads of spent mushroom bags thinking they could use them as soil amendment. That did not work well, they had dried out and the mycilium was dead. When tilled into the soil it was two years before things would grow. Where they were piled up and the worms worked them over they got some good compost after two years that filled some very productive raised beds.
The mushroom variety was oyster.
So my observation is that the best use of such material is to bury it in a huglecultur bed and let benefit be holding water and let the nutrients come to the surface naturally as they would from dead tree roots.
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Last year I wrested control of the shiitakes from my non-permie husband & we had our best year ever. I'm a little more systematic then he is, but he is a better "do-er" in general. Maybe I need to look for a marriage thread? Tips for harmony with your non-permie spouse.

I carefully put all of our non producing logs to the right of the culvert of our small creek. A month ago he helped me out by tossing a bunch of productive logs in the same spot. Arrrgggghhhh!

Luckily, they've started producing so no harm done! I really didn't think they'd fruit like that after a rain but they did. I'm thinking about keeping them in the stream full time (except maybe while they're resting).

The only thing is some of these that fruited have VERY thick stems. Is that bad? Is that a result of over soaking?

 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Good news to report. The shiitake logs I inoculated last fall and stored in my house in empty plastic feed bags fruited! I can't believe it's taken this long for me to move them out of the house but, stuff happens. Anyway, these are the first logs to fruit, maybe because they are white birch which wont last as long but are quicker to fruit?

We've had a slow but steady harvest, 5lbs total so far. I haven't been shocking as much as last year, mainly leaving them with one end sticking in a stream. Plus, it's been a VERY wet year so far! We could sell some if we had more ready at one time... Working on it.
 
John Suavecito
gardener
Posts: 2693
183
forest garden fungi trees books food preservation bike
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Great news, CJ. When did they fruit? Normally they wouldnt' fruit here til October. I put a tarp over my stacks in the summer to increase the humidity. It's possible that the same effect occurred with your plastic feed bags. I like the concept of the creek as a moistener:no chlorine or chloramine. They come from a rainy, humid climate.
John S
PDX OR
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
They just fruited after shocking but it is a warm weather strain. We've been getting mushrooms since mid-may. Our logs stop producing in October if it gets too cold.

There are two issues with leaving them in the creek: easy access for slugs and over soaking ruining a few mushrooms.

The stock tank we shock the logs in is filled by the same creek. Very natural but could use a bit more of a Permaculture type production bump.


I think I need to revisit the design of the laying field but for now I'm OK with sporadic production for household consumption.
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
More good shiitake news. Logs that I inoculated this spring are NOW fruiting! This has never happened before. They didn't fruit until I shocked them in water tho.

I may chalk it up to using Birch which may fruit quicker but burn out quicker too. LOTS of sap wood. Some of the spawn was held over a year in the fridge and worked!

 
Judith Browning
Posts: 7088
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
1092
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
We just moved two weeks ago and brought our shiitake logs with us. Apparently the two miles of washboard gravel road on a trailer was just what they needed .....along with a couple good rains. We've had huge flushes and it looks like they are pinning to go at it again. This time it's both the West Wind wide range variety and the cool weather Bellweather at the same time. The temperature has been down to freezing at night and back to t-shirt weather by afternoon.
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I always bang mine on the ground after shocking and the results are much better than without banging. Your post does make me wonder if it matters when the vibrating happens, before or after a soaking?
 
Judith Browning
Posts: 7088
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
1092
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
They were on the dry side when we loaded them but they got rained on on the drive and for another day or so after stacking.....so I guess I would say most of the moisture happened after the rough road...trailer with no shocks and it really got to bouncing on the washboard.
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Shiitake production so far this year is 19 lbs, double last years at this time. As the number of logs have grown, organization is more important. I'd love to see how people who raise shiitakes for sale organize their laying yards. I now have 2 spots. On one side of the creek there are my "never fruited logs" and the other side are the proven ones. This is making fruiting much more reliable. I'm shocking 10 logs a week and of those about 60% fruit. Ideally you have 7 or 8 groups that you shock on a rotating schedule.


I buy my spawn from http://www.fieldforest.net/. I love the fact that they have named varieties. Here's a pic of the aptly named Double Jewel.
IMG_1510.JPG
[Thumbnail for IMG_1510.JPG]
IMG_1512.JPG
[Thumbnail for IMG_1512.JPG]
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
My big problem used to be slugs but since I moved them off the ground after shocking gnats are the issue. Turning the caps upside down and tapping gets some off but the best results come with using an air compressor and blowing them off. It means in need to collect them and bring them to my workshop half a mile away. So far I haven't found a 12 v option I could use off the car. The 12v ones seem to only inflate tires or mattresses.
IMG_1375.JPG
[Thumbnail for IMG_1375.JPG]
IMG_1376.JPG
[Thumbnail for IMG_1376.JPG]
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Here's an update on my shiitake set up. I doubled last years harvest and wound up with 64 lbs! Every year I add about 50 new logs and it's really kicking in to high gear. I have 2 separate laying yards, one for proven logs that have fruited and one for logs that have never fruited. I find this very helpful.

I keep trying different varieties from http://www.fieldforest.net/ I think they are the only ones who sell named varieties. The most beautiful, by far is Miss Happiness.
IMG_1774.jpg
[Thumbnail for IMG_1774.jpg]
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I did make a video tour of my mushroom set up.


 
John Suavecito
gardener
Posts: 2693
183
forest garden fungi trees books food preservation bike
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I separate mine that way too cj
 
Cj Sloane
pollinator
Posts: 3738
Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
100
dog duck fungi trees books chicken bee solar
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
And do you organize the fruiting ones into groups to shock on a rotating basis?
 
John Suavecito
gardener
Posts: 2693
183
forest garden fungi trees books food preservation bike
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
No I usually don't shock
 
After some pecan pie, you might want to cleanse your palatte with this tiny ad:
holiday shopping for 2019
https://permies.com/t/128446/holiday-shopping
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!