Something Different to Grow in the Kitchen

The nearly ready to eat mushrooms

On Monday I mentioned, in passing, my adventures with trying to grow mushrooms. From this photo, it looks fairly successful, right? Read on.

The mushroom saga, for lack of a better title, began when the Spoiler saw a log that was supposed to grow mushrooms in a gift insert in our local paper. Since I was a little light on gifts for him, I thought that the log might be fun, even though I would be doing all the actual “growing. He would enjoy the eating part.

Shitake mushroom log

So I ordered it. It was a fairly complex thing. It had to be soaked 24 hours in non-chlorinated water before anything would happen. Do you have any idea how much water it takes to cover this log? Half a utility sink, exactly.

So I did that and then set it on a plate (like the other box is sitting) and waited. Nothing. They say if nothing happens in a week, repeat the process and cover the log because perhaps it needs moisture.

Back to the half utility sink of non-chlorinated water. Fortunately I had just bought some plants so I had a large covering available.

A week later, I was growing some nice white mold, but mushrooms–no. So the log is in my potting shed. I will try to get it to produce outside this summer.

Meanwhile , the Spoiler now is looking for mushrooms. So online I go, to this organic kit “guaranteed to grow.” I soak it according to instructions (no nonsense about non-chlorinated water, but I used some anyway), and as soon as I scored the inside of the box, I could smell a nice earthy smell. I knew that this would work.

Here’s the progress:

Perhaps a week after soaking

3 days later

2 weeks after soaking

So this is an unqualified success! The Spoiler gets his mushrooms!

2 thoughts on “Something Different to Grow in the Kitchen

  1. tonytomeo February 13, 2021 / 7:25 pm

    There is actually a market for alder logs for this purpose. I can grow alder trees (if I want to), but know nothing of mushrooms. People do not realize that mycology is not part of horticulture.

  2. gardendaze February 14, 2021 / 6:34 am

    That’s interesting about the market for the logs. We have a mycological society here that’s always offering walks to newcomers. But of course there’s the time factor.

    Because we are in a relatively moist part of the country, most of us grow mushrooms outside with no trouble, whether we like it or not. They have always fascinated me–but unless I am growing them in a box on my counter, I am not eating anything in my yard.

    Maybe someday I will make time to learn more….


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