Let’s dive deeper into the science behind mushrooms. Mushrooms are the fruiting body of the fungi organism. The balance of the organism lives inside the log (for us it’s the log, but mushrooms grow lots of other places) in a form called mycelium. The mycelium, which look like white cobweb like networks of cells, grow throughout the log and are the balance of the mushroom organism. Mushrooms and the mycelium bodies of mushrooms are some of the largest single organisms on the planet.
We inoculate our logs in the spring. The shiitake mycelium grow throughout the log during the incubation period. For our logs this usually takes from six to twelve months. When the mycelium has extended throughout the log, fruiting begins. And when conditions are right, the mycelium produce fruiting bodies which is the way mushrooms sexually reproduce. The fruiting bodies produce spores which are the DNA carriers of the organism.
Different mushrooms have different looking fruiting bodies. Below you can see lions mane, golden oysters and shiitake, all grown by us. Next year, we will also have olive oysterlings—you can see what they look like here.
We are excited for the new grow season and everything that comes next. This year we have a new laying yard with a new water tank to soak the logs, a new rack to hold the logs while they are fruiting and 125 newly inoculated logs from 2019. It takes 6-12 months for the logs to start fruiting after inoculation--so this is their first year and mostly likely their most productive! Knowing we'd have a consistent harvest each week, we started a CSA (community supported agriculture). We're delighted to have filled our spots for the season and each week our members will receive either a half or full share. So, each week we simply need to soak the logs, wait patiently and give the logs some care, then harvest, clean and package. Follow us on social media for weekly updates on possible surplus and the ability to buy each week. You can also find our order form here.
We take the safety of your food seriously and will abide by the following safety protocols.
We were delighted to finish inoculating our logs extra early this year. We've partnered with a neighbor who owns a woodlot that needs to be managed, and we can say that this year's logs are as local as you can possibly get!
We used mostly oak logs for our shiitakes and also added olive oysterling mushrooms. And, we are experimenting with beech trees to grow lions mane. In total, we inoculated more than 250 logs--all of these will be ready in 2021. It takes a full year for the logs to start producing mushrooms--although you can get lucky with early arrivals as early as the fall.
This year was especially difficult to inoculate our logs due to the COVID-19 crisis. Since we started so early in March, we were able to have a few helpers, and we were truly grateful. However, knowing we needed to socially distance ourselves, we mostly worked with just the two of us each weekend to drill, fill and wax! We are excited to see these logs and their mushrooms come to fruition in 2021.
Hudson Valley Mushrooms is launching a new mushroom CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) this summer. Our shiitakes will be available July - September 2020.
Hudson Valley Mushrooms CSA
Full shares - $192 for 12 weeks - Includes 1 pound of shiitakes per week
Half shares - $96 for 12 weeks - Includes 1/2 pound of shiitakes per week
To learn more and sign up.
Spring is the time to inoculate your logs with the mushroom spawn. We are gearing up for this season by sourcing our logs locally in the Hudson Valley, recruiting our work crew to inoculate, ordering our spawn, tools and wax, and scheduling the best time. We are looking to inoculate in March and April 2020. To sign up for a shift to be part of the spring inoculation and to learn more about shiitakes on logs contact us.
Visit us often to see updates on how log-grown shiitakes come to life at Hudson Valley Mushrooms.