Varieties of exotic mushrooms include morel, blue oysters, shiitake, pom pom blanc, reishi, maitake, enoki and more. Anyone can grow exotic mushrooms with the help of a commercially available mushroom grow kit. Once you combine the spores with the log and moisture, they will sprout. The quantity depends on your growing space and needs. You can easily grow more than one fruiting of mushrooms for years, providing mushrooms for recipes of all kinds.
Drill 25 holes in a 4-foot-long hardwood log. Use a 5/16-inch drill bit and make the holes 2 inches deep. Space the holes 3 inches apart.
Remove the mushroom plugs from the growing kit. Each one was inoculated with mycelium cells that will grow into the exotic mushrooms.
Push a plug into each hole in the log. They should fit securely and be flush against the log. They should not stick out. Hammer them in with a rubber mallet it necessary.
Melt cheese wax to create a seal on each plug. This wax is used for coating specialty cheeses. Put the cheese in a tin can and put the can inside a pot of boiling water. This will create a double-boiler effect, melting the wax. The seal will protect the mushroom plugs from pest or fungus infestation.
Place the log in a shady location. Stand it up on one end so the plug holes are not lying on the ground.
Soak the log in water every other week. Use a hose to wet it or immerse it in a tub full of water. Make sure the water does not contain chlorine. Each mushroom variety has its own growing schedule.
Cut the mushrooms off the log to harvest them. Cut them where the stalk meets the log.
Immerse the log in freezing water if you want to get additional fruitings. Let it sit in a tub of water for 24 hours once every two months. This will reactivate the mycelium cells, causing another harvest. Do not shock the tree more than once every two months.
Harvest from the same log for up to four years. After that, the log will be too broken down and you'll need a new log and grow kit.