If you have a power drill, you can plant these wooden plugs. (If you don't, ask your neighbors. They will be intrigued by the process and eager to help, especially if promised a gift of fresh-grown mushrooms!) Here's what you do:
1. Select a fresh-cut (within 6 weeks) stump or log. Deciduous hardwoods such as maple, oak, sweetgum, and poplar work best. Conifers do NOT work.
2. Gather your Brown Oyster plugs, the drill with 5/16-inch bit, melted soy wax, and a hammer. (We offer a kit containing the drill bit, a collar to stop the drill from going too far into the log, the soy wax, and a little paintbrush to apply it -- see Log Plugging Kit.) Make sure the stump or log is fairly clean, though lichen or moss is fine.
3. Drill 1.25 inches into the log, spacing the holes at least 5 to 6 inches apart. You can drill the top and the side of stumps, and all around logs except the area that will rest on the ground. Logs should probably be at least 6 inches in diameter, so that you can get the longest possible life out of your mushrooms. The rule of thumb is that the mushrooms produce one season for every inch of log thickness. That means that a 6-inch-diameter log should bear fruit for 6 years, a 10-inch for 10 years, etc.
4. Gently hammer (it's more like tapping) the 3.4-inch dowel plug into the hole. The plug has been inoculated with brown oyster spawn.
5. Paint the plug with melted soy wax to secure it in place.
6. If the stump or log is very dry, soak or deep-water it. Otherwise, just make sure that it gets a good watering once a week and is never allowed to completely dry out.
7. In 8 months to one year, you will have beautiful fresh, delicious brown oyster mushrooms! After that, they will produce new crops intermittently year-round! All they need is consistent moisture and, after you harvest a mushroom, a good deep soaking at the plug site!
Brown oysters are a gourmet treat, and supermarkets charge gourmet prices for them, even when they aren't as fresh as you'd like. Now you can grow the ultimate in fresh, organic, delicious brown oysters every time . . in your own backyard!
Don't stop here -- we also offer wood-cultivated (that's the official term for what we call "log mushrooms"! Zones 3-9. Pack of approximately 100 plugs.
If you can't "plant" your mushrooms immediately, the spawn may be refrigerated for 3 to 6 months, but never frozen. Do not let spawn sit in the sunlight.