What kind of wood
should I use for my logs?
Normally oak wood is used . Laurel Oak, Water Oak and Live Oak
are the most commonly used but other hard woods will work as well
such as Hickory Pecan,and Walnut and Alder. Soft woods are fine
to use, but lack the density of cellulose, so they won't produce
as high as hardwoods. No Pine or Cedar. Use logs that are fresh
cut. They should be no older than 3 months old. If you inoculate
older logs, there will be competing fungi in the wood. You do not
need to soak log before or after inoculating, fresh cut trees have
high water content. Only soak when fruiting or if they have dried
How long will it take for the log to produce mushrooms?
The average time to production is 6 to 9 months, but it really
depends on the spawn rate. The more spawn you use in the log the
faster it will take over and produce mushrooms. Some types of mushrooms
take longer and will vary with type of wood used
How often do I have to water logs?
After you inoculate, you should water the logs 2-3 times a week
to maintain the moisture level in the wood. After log is taken over
by the mycilium, they will start to fruit.You can also force fruit
the logs by completely soaking them in water for 12 to 24 hours
every 5 weeks. This works well with Shiitake, but others vary in
results, depending on time of year. You can also force fruit the
logs by completely soaking them in water for 12 to 24 hours every
5 weeks. This works well with Shiitake, but others vary in results,
depending on time of year.
What time of year will it produce?
In Southern States the inoculated shiitake logs could produce
in all months of year. Oysters and most other varieties will pretty
much do as they please, It's a good idea to visit your logs , look
them over and maybe have a talk with them. This also can depends
on type of spawn was used. Most often the logs produce in the cooler
months. In other areas the times will vary according to type and
strain of mushroom.
How many pounds of mushrooms will come from an average size log
Shiitake mushroom logs are very efficient. They will produce up
to 95% of the dry weight of the log in mushrooms. If the log weighs
10 pounds dry, it can produce up to 9.5 pounds of mushrooms. Most
types of mushrooms are equally effective.
Should I keep the log in shade or sun?
In order to keep moisture in the logs, store them in the shade.
Sun will dry the logs out and you will not get mushrooms. The logs
can get can get some morning sun as long as you water them regularly.
If there is too much wind, they will dry as well. You can always
cover with a shade cloth.
How deep should I put the spawn in the log?
The drilled hole should be a little deeper than the spawn dowel,
and dowel should be flush. If it is raised above the level of the
log that won’t harm the production but it is not ideal.
How long does the log need to be?
The standard shiitake log length is 4-5 feet. It could be as short
at 6 inches or as long as 40 feet. The log length should be manageable
size for you to handle
There are other mushrooms coming out of my log what are they and
what should I do about them?
Different fungi such as Turkey tail may appear on your log. Some
of the volunteer fungi may be edible (with positive ID). Let them
share the log, as it
would have no impact to take them off.
How long will the log produce?
The logs will last 1-2 years if you have force fruiting (Soaking
log for 12-24 hours every 5 weeks) and up to 4 years if you do not
soak them regularly.
Can I re-inoculate an old log?
No, once it's in the log it is good for the life of the log.
How do I know when they are ready to pick?
You may pick the mushrooms at any time, you will get the same
amount over the life of the log whether you pick them young or fully
Should I stack the log or should I lean them?
It depends on how much shade and space as well as amount of logs.
Logs can be stacked in layers like "log homes" or buried
a foot in ground,standing up, will wick moisture from the ground
.(the mushrooms will only appear above ground, so you are not losing
Is it ok for the log to touch the ground?
It is ok for the logs to touch the ground, it may even help wick
the moisture from the ground.
I bought too much spawn can I store it and for how long?
You can store spawn in the refrigerator for several months.
What about the stump?
You may inoculate the stump of a fresh cut tree by girdling the
bottom of the stump. This just means you score the bark deep enough
to keep it from healing and growing again. You can use a chainsaw
, hand saw , etc. You will then wait about 2 weeks from when the
tree was cut down or girdled. Place plugs around the edge of the
cut face and fill in the rest of face with plugs. You also may put
plugs into sides of the stump if you left it high enough.Some chose
to wax the cut to keep moisture from being lost. It doesn't hurt
to do this in dryer areas but in high humidity areas this is skipped.
What about waxing?
In lower humidity areas, it is worth the effort to wax the CUT
end of the logs. Higher humidity areas it is optional.