There are two basic methods used to grow shiitake mushrooms. Either method can be used for small cultivation projects.
The two methods of growing Shiitakes are:
- Natural hardwood log method
- Sawdust block method
The natural log method using natural oak or similar types of hardwood produces the highest quality mushroom. Using this method logs of about 4 feet in length are used. Holes are drilled in the logs for spawn inoculation. Once inoculated the holes are sealed using either hot wax or plugs of plastic.
The logs should be placed in the shade of other trees, in a greenhouse, or using a shade cloth. Shiitakes require cycles of day and night with ventilation. microdosing penis envy They do need sunlight but shaded rather than direct sunlight. Shiitakes can also be grown inside with conditions that are controlled also.
After colonization of the entire log has been obtained, usually about 6-18 months, the log is sprinkled or soaked with water to encourage mushroom growth. Continual moisture and cold temperatures activate the cycle for reproduction. The mushroom crop for a single log increases each year of log maturity. Logs generally produce up to 4 years. After the logs have completed their expected years of production they can be used to provide heat by burning, inoculated with a different type of mushroom spawn or composted.
Sawdust block otherwise known as artificial logs consist of cooked grains and sawdust which has been undergone pressurized steam for sterilization. The blocks receive spawn inoculation and placed in incubation for about 4 weeks to 16 weeks. The blocks are then water soaked to stimulate mushroom growth. The sawdust block method is completed under controlled conditions indoors. Sawdust block cultivation is more prone to disease and competing fungi than the natural log method. Contamination can be reduced by following good sanitation procedures and using quality controls. Some growers use pesticides and other chemicals.