Ma and Pa Kit

Looking for a unique organic gardening project or gift? Check out the organic shiitake mushroom logs from Perkins, Oklahoma-based Lost Creek Mushroom Farm.

The logs are actual organic oak or similar hardwood logs impregnated with shiitake spawn. They grow shiitakes every 2 months with regular soaking in nonchlorinated room-temperature water. Shocking the log with ice water starts the fruiting process, and mushrooms are ready to harvest within 2 weeks. Logs will produce for 3+ years.

Several kits are available, each containing its own soaking tray, gift basket, log(s) and recipes. The Ma and Pa Kit ($46.50) is the most popular, with two 8″ to 10″ logs that yield mushrooms every month.

“Most food stores carry only shiitakes grown on sawdust, which taste flat and don’t have the same potent health benefits as log-grown shiitakes,” says company founder Doug Williams. “People who love mushrooms and have never had natural shiitakes are in for a treat. It’s a lot of fun to watch the little white buds pop through the bark and then fill out to become beautiful brown shiitakes.”

Lost Creek Mushroom Farm also sells a Shiitake Gift Basket, as well as gourmet items like Shiitake Tortilla Soup, Shiitake Lime-Dill Dip and Shiitake Southwest Dip.