Cultivation Difficulty: Moderate
Substrate: hardwood chips and sawdust, hardwood logs
Colonization/Fruiting Temperatures: 70-80F/50-70F
Available In: Culture in slant or petri dish*
Perhaps one of the best known gourmet mushrooms, shiitake is both good food, and good for you. It reportedly has wide-ranging health promoting and immunity stimulating properties, showing promise in fighting cancer, viral infections, and helping control high cholesterol.
Shiitake has been cultivated in Asia for centuries, and is desired for its dense, meaty flavored flesh. Tastes great fried, grilled, in soups, salads, stir-fry and with rice.
Fruiting formula by volume:
Water until moist and well soaked through. Drain or squeeze out excess water. The substrate should be damp but not wet. Pack into autoclavable bags and sterilized from 1-4 hours at 15 psi depending on the volume of the substrate. Larger volumes need a longer sterilization time to heat the core enough for complete sterilization. Depending on the type of bag and method of inoculation, the bags can be sealed before or after sterilization. Colonization is slow and may take as long as 1-2 months.
Fruiting requires removing or puncturing the bag and providing a cool, well ventilated and humidified environment with indirect light. Hand misting daily and covering the bagless sawdust block loosely with a light plastic grocery bag (to maintain humidity) gives acceptable results on the kitchen counter.
We offer a quick and easy Shiitake Mushroom Block - Ready to Grow Kit for those wishing to grow this mushroom at home. Shiitake is also easily cultivated from cut hardwood logs using shiitake mushroom plug spawn.
*Note: Culture supplied as living mycelium in a test tube slant or grown on sterile media in a petri dish. Culture can be stored under refrigeration for several months. Slants are best suited for long distance travel, international shipments, or long term culture storage. To ensure freshness of culture, slant and plate requests are made to order, please allow 2-4 weeks for processing and shipment.