- Organic Hen of the Woods (Maitake) Mushroom Plug Spawn
Organic Hen of the Woods (Maitake) Mushroom Plug Spawn
|Spawn shelf life||6 months (refrigerated)|
Hen of the woods, aka Maitake (Grifola frondosa) is a succulent polypore with a delicate feathery texture and earthy rich flavor. Its lacy sides make it a great option for frying, roasting, sautéing, and adding a visual flair to many dishes. Hen of the woods can be difficult to cultivate, and is therefore recommended for enthusiast growers who have had some success with other more advanced species or are looking to experiment and try new methods.
Because hen of the woods is not a strong competitor, it requires a different cultivation strategy. Inoculation works best when logs are steam sterilized, incubated and colonized in filter patch bags, then removed from bags and partially buried in a shaded spot.
Aside from being kiln dried, our wooden dowels are not treated in any other way.
Ideal project size:
Plug spawn is ideal for smaller projects of 1-10 logs, though some log cultivators will use them for larger projects.
That's not mold, it's mycelium!
Your kit includes plug spawn colonized with mushroom mycelium. It may appear covered with a soft, white, mold-like substance - that's the mushroom mycelium! It is completely normal. The mycelium of some species is more prominent than others.
Click here to download our pamphlet on growing mushrooms on logs, stumps, and totems.
Hen of the woods will only fruit in oak logs. However, it should be noted that hen of the woods is prone to being out-competed by other fungi. For this reason, we recommend the following:
To limit competition and increase the chances of success, we strongly recommend sterilizing 8" by 8" segments of oak log in a pressure cooker or steam sterilizer before inoculation. Incubate your sterilized log segments for a few months in XL sealed filter patch bags until they are completely colonized. After colonization period, logs should be removed from bags and partially buried under 2 inches of top soil. The mushrooms will fruit from logs and emerge out of the soil.
(You can sterilize your log segments in a 22 qt or larger pressure cooker such as an All-American.)
If you don't plan to use immediately, you can refrigerate your spawn for up to 6 months.
Hen of the woods has a semi-firm texture and earthy flavor. It can be ripped into small pieces and added to a dish or left large to be the centerpiece of a meal. We love to confit hen of the woods by slow cooking it at a low temperature in an oven submerged in extra virgin olive oil. After 4-5 hours the Hen of the Woods will be crispy and delicious and you'll have mushroom infused olive oil!
If you’re going to consume home-grown mushrooms, make sure to cook your fresh mushrooms thoroughly with heat. If it is your first time eating this species, it is best to start with a small amount to check for allergies, even if cooked.
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So far; so good, so interesting, so fun
Wonderful, as I try different types, environments, growing conditions. I am learning, eating healthy and enjoying, the more, that I experience. Hen of the woods, are one of the common species, in the Oak forest, where I reside.
Your review made our day, Robert! Please reach out if you ever need anything.