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Mushroom Harvest

May 30th, 2012

Last spring, I inoculated a bunch of logs and some wood chips with various mushroom spawn. I was lucky enough to harvest a big batch of oyster mushrooms last fall but this spring has been super hot and dry, so no mushrooms harvests yet. Watering the logs would stimulate growth, but I really don’t want to do it and I don’t have a container big enough to soak them in.

The Garden Giant spawn that was used in the wood chips was spread in the walkways of the new lower garden. Every time I water my onion patch a few winecap mushrooms pop up in the walkways. I have completely missed seeing them until they’re too big and slug eaten to harvest – until yesterday.

Even though I inoculated the wood chips and these mushrooms are growing right where I did, I was still a bit leery of harvesting them and eating them. After spending some time on google and finding this great website with identification tips, I decided they were indeed Winecaps and into the pot they will go. Last night we enjoyed them cooked into some Hungarian Goulash made with lots of garlic scapes and venison.

Sometimes when we add some new edible to the garden we can be a bit leery of proper identification. When in doubt, spend some time searching for proper identification or ask a seasoned gardener/grower.

Have you ever had a harvest that you were leery of eating?

9 Comments to “Mushroom Harvest”
  1. pam on May 30, 2012 at 6:27 am

    I want to try mushrooms, but I also would have to check and recheck to make sure I was eating what I thought I was!

    Reply to pam's comment

  2. Bonnie on May 30, 2012 at 7:32 am

    Last year I added my spent enoki sawdust to the garden and had some mushrooms pop up. They look very different when not grown in the fridge. I too researched them and finally accepted them from the familiar smell. It is different than a regular mushroom smell. It was also attached to a sawdust clump. I have also been leery of the garden huckleberry I grew last year.

    When sowing seeds for something I haven’t grown before I plant it in clusters then thin it. that way I don’t think it is a weed. Once it is larger I can usually identify it though.

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  3. Victoria on May 30, 2012 at 8:07 am

    Exciting! I have not gathered the courage to start a mushroom log, but I did grow mushrooms via an indoor kit over the winter. Perhaps my first step into mushroom cultivation!

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  4. Allison on May 30, 2012 at 8:29 am

    We still have some plugs in the fridge that we never got into logs yet this Spring :/ I wonder if they are still good.

    LOCE garlic scapes — we just started getting some, but I am waiting for more!

    Reply to Allison's comment

  5. Maybelline on May 30, 2012 at 1:14 pm

    Not really. Don’t think I could have your courage regarding mushrooms.

    Reply to Maybelline's comment

  6. Liz J on May 30, 2012 at 6:23 pm

    I remember when you posted that ~ how exciting! I would be very careful also with identification. Enjoy.

    Reply to Liz J's comment

  7. Karla on May 31, 2012 at 8:19 am

    What do the winecaps taste like? I don’t like seafood and have read that oyster mushrooms taste like their namesake, and have read that the shaggy mane mushrooms can trigger weird reactions in people who don’t drink much, like me. So, if I want to cultivate mushrooms outside, the winecaps may be the way to go.

    Reply to Karla's comment

  8. Liz J on June 5, 2012 at 4:48 pm

    When I was out at the garden today I noticed a very dead tree stump by the stone wall, with a lot of what looked like gourmet mushrooms on them. I got a great picture. They are on the flat side, with some white on top. Thought of you when I saw them…and no, I’m not brave enough!

    Reply to Liz J's comment

    • Susy on June 5, 2012 at 5:10 pm

      Might be oyster mushrooms, we have some wild ones around here.

      Reply to Susy's comment


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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