How to Grow Lingzhi


Lingzhi, ganoderma lucidum and fungus of immortality are all names for the same rare fungus. A desired and widely touted component of Asian medicine, the fungus is native to China and Japan but rarely seen in nature. Lingzhi is cultivated for use in holistic medical treatments by using small tissue cultures call inoculations and mimicking the natural conditions in which it develops. It is an unusual-looking fungus, as it appears to a have a lacquered carapace that can range in hue from deep mahogany red to whitish-yellow.

Step 1

Acquire Lingzhi tissue cultures from a living fungus either from a natural woodland source, a fungi cultivator or specialist retailer or from a scientific lab growing and studying the fungi.

Step 2

Prepare an organic wood growing substrate for the fungus in the form of an old unfumigated, hardwood log or a sawdust log. Wood is the natural growing medium on which Lingzhi is found in the wild. The microbial activity on wood is conducive to the growth of the fungus. Mimicking the natural conditions increases the chance of successful propagation. Soak the substrate for several days until the surface tissues of the wood are saturated as an old log on the shady forest floor would be.

Step 3

Place the Lingzhi tissue cultures on the moist wood surface roughly six inches apart along the top side. If you are attempting to grow larger salad-plate-size Lingzhi fungi forms, allow at least a foot between each placement of inoculation.

Step 4

Nestle the wood log into nutrient-dense soil in a moist, shady environment such as a forest floor or deep shade glen. Partially bury the wood substrate in the soil by at least an inch or two to stabilize it and mimic the way a decaying log would lay and eventually become stuck into the soil and debris as forest material built up around it. Leave the fungi cultures uncovered and exposed to the elements.

Things You'll Need

  • Lingzhi fungal cultures
  • Wood growing substrate


  • University of Wisconsin: Ganoderma lucidum, Reishi, or Lig Zhi
  • Cornell University: Cornell Returns Collection of Rare Fungi to China
  • North Carolina A&T State University: Reishi
Keywords: Lingzhi fungus, ganoderma lucidum, growing fungus

About this Author

An omni-curious communications professional, Dena Kane has more than 17 years of experience writing and editing content for online publications, corporate communications, business clients, industry journals, as well as film and broadcast media. Kane studied political science at the University of California, San Diego.