How to inoculate your hardwood logs

Choose the right logs for production. Any hardwood log is safe to use, by definition a hardwood tree species is any tree that has flowers (Angiosperms). For larger or commercial operations Poplar or Gum would be the easiest to obtain. Turkeytail is very efficient at breaking down substrate. The logs however will not start producing fruiting bodies until the logs are completely consolidated (taken over by mycelium).

For one or a few logs a normal drill is fine for the job. If you have quite a few logs to inoculate a high-speed drill or even better an angle grinder with a 8mm drill bit attachment will get the job done much quicker. I recommend using 75-150mm diameter logs 1-meter long. Using smaller diameter logs will enable you to start harvesting mushrooms in 4-6 months. If you are using larger logs, they will fruit for longer, but you will have to wait longer for their first fruiting. Using a 75-100mm diameter 1-meter long log you will have 4 rows of 10 wood dowels spaced approximately 100mm apart staggering the holes in each row from the row next to it to form a diamond pattern.


Hammer in the inoculated wood dowels so they are flush or slightly countersunk into the log. Once you have filled all the holes you must seal the inoculation points with wax. I use bees wax or soy wax. Bees wax must be melted to a higher temperature than soy wax. Apply with a natural bristled brush, synthetic brushes will likely melt, brush wax on the ends of the logs also. The wax keeps out unwanted organisms that will try to compete with your Mushroom mycelium while it’s colonizing the log. Oyster mycelium is more temperature intolerant when colonizing the log. It will slow down in production as the weather gets cooler. Expect the logs to fruit in warmer temperatures.
Place your logs under a tree or bushes, under a deck or shady side of the house to help stop them drying out. Water the logs as often as possible for best results or whenever you water the rest of your garden.
You will know when your logs are ready to fruit when you see the ends of the logs gathering thick chalky appearance.