Growing reishi mushrooms is a great pastime for the mushroom enthusiast that has a hard time finding the mushroom in the wild during the foraging season
Growing reishi mushrooms might not be the first idea that comes to mind with mushroom cultivation. Many mushroom farmers will start with common edibles that are easy to grow, like blue oyster mushrooms or shiitake mushrooms.
There is a lot of value behind growing your own reishi mushrooms, though. Not only can reishi be used to make medicinal teas, tinctures, and powders, it presents a beautiful show during its growing period especially if you use the reishi mushroom growing kit (more on this below).
Growing reishi mushrooms at home with logs and stumps
Mycophiles interested in growing reishi mushrooms at home should consider plug spawn or sawdust spawn for log cultivation.
The reishi spawn we provide is Ganoderma lucidum, which is best grown on sugar maple but will also do well on oak, red maples, and sweet gum trees. If you are trying to only inoculate a handful of logs on your property, then reishi mushroom plug spawn should do the job. Reishi mushroom sawdust spawn is recommended if you want to inoculate larger amounts of logs, like 25 logs or more. A palm inoculator will also be helpful in this process as it allows you to inoculate the logs with sawdust spawn much quicker.
Have any oak or red maple stumps on your property? You could easily turn them into totems with the use of some sawdust spawn. You can also use sawdust spawn for inoculating larger amounts of logs, or inoculating hardwood sawdust. Visit this article to learn the specifics of developing totems and inoculating them with spawn.
We also sell reishi mushroom grain spawn, which can be used for inoculating supplemented sawdust.
Furthermore, If you live in the northeast, you can go foraging for reishi during the warmer months. You will typically start seeing them in late May on hemlocks, often around water. They will be ready to harvest around late July when they have turned a deep red color.
Using a reishi mushroom growing kit for growing reishi mushrooms at home
People do not necessarily think of reishi mushroom when they first think about getting a grow kit.
And interestingly enough, the reishi mushroom grow kit looks very different from the multitude of other mushroom grow kits we offer, like the shiitake, lion’s mane, or oyster mushroom kits.
The reishi mushroom growing kit begins with the antler phase. The mushroom morphs from the antler shape to the conch shape during growth. A lot of time this happens when the mushroom is in higher CO2 and lower light environment.
Know reasons why people are interested in growing reishi mushrooms
Many people consider reishi a valued medicinal mushroom, which is a main reason it is cultivated and foraged. Reishi does not have a tasty flavor like many other gourmet mushrooms, so it’s medicinal constituents are the main reasons it's grown.
The book Medicinal Mushrooms by Christopher Hobbs, L. Ac., presents a historical look at reishi, including ailments that it was used for during ancient times. In the book Hobbs writes:
“G. Lucidum has been used in the folk medicine of China and Japan for 4,000 years (Zhao & Zhang, 1994), especially in the treatment of hepatopathy, chronic hepatitis, nephritis, hypertension, arthritis, neurasthenia, insomnia, bronchitis, asthma, and gastric ulcer (Kabir et al. 1988).”
Reishi has been explored through tests to determine its efficacy in supporting health. Most of these tests have involved mice, yet many concluded positive results.
Just as a reminder, scientists use mice in studies because, according to the Foundation for Biomedical Research (FBR), mice are similar to humans genetically. It has also been noted that there are also biological and behavioral similarities as well. Perhaps conducting reishi tests with humans would yield similar results to those found in mice.
Growing reishi mushrooms has never been easier
You can be growing reishi mushrooms at home with our grain spawn, sawdust spawn, or plug spawn. And if you do not want to handle the inoculation process yourself, you can get a reishi mushroom growing kit to grow our own reishis indoors at home.