Improving yields of shiitake cultivation in the Northeast by selecting appropriate strains

2016 Annual Report for FNE16-847

Project Type: Farmer
Funds awarded in 2016: $14,976.00
Projected End Date: 02/28/2019
Grant Recipient: Fungi Ally
Region: Northeast
State: Massachusetts
Project Leader:

Improving yields of shiitake cultivation in the Northeast by selecting appropriate strains


The goal of this project is to explore six different shiitake strains and the impact on yields they have. We hope to find out if different shiitake strains increase yield for log cultivation. We will also note if the strains perform similar on indoor sawdust blocks to determine if faster methods of strain research can be used. Dylan Kessler is no longer working on this project. Dylan helped to inoculate the first batch of sawdust grown shiitakes. Willie inoculated 100 logs in April of 2016 using 5 different strains. Willie also fruited the first trial of shiitake sawdust blocks.

Objectives/Performance Targets

This year we inoculated 100 logs. 20 each for the strains CS, WR46, 3782, 75, and L123. The logs were stacked in the shade and have been incubating since April. All logs were from the same tree, a large sugar maple. There has been some contamination in the form of Schizophylum commune, which has showed up this fall on the logs. Logs were watered 3 times during the summer with a sprinkle for about 8 hours each time. It was an exceptionally dry year in Massachusetts. Fruiting and data collection will happen over the next 2 years for these logs.


The sawdust trials were put on hold after Dylan decided to not continue the grant in April. Many of the bags from the first trial become contaminated and the ones, which were fruited, produced almost no mushrooms, for any strain. The 2nd sawdust trial will be run in the spring of 2017. 120 more logs will also be inoculated again in spring of 2017 to give more validity to the strain trials.


Results will not start to be collected until June of 2017 and will continue being collected through October of 2018 and then will be published.


No data has been collected to date. The year was very dry in Massachusetts potentially affecting spawn run of the logs.


Dr. Robert Wick
Technical advisor
Umass Amherst
109 Fernald Hall, University of Massachusetts Amherst
Amherst, MA 01003
Office Phone: (413) 545-1045