Good things gro-o-ow in Ontario!

(Corny, I know, but I’ve always loved the little jingle that was so popular a few decades ago….)

Yours truly, with ONE single clump…it ended up weighing over 2 1/2 pounds!

I haven’t written much about our mushrooms lately, so last week, we took the camera into the barn when we were picking.  When we pick our first crop (aka “flush”) of mushrooms, generally, there are alot of mushrooms on the new bags.  There is alot of stored energy, just waiting to pop out as delicious mushrooms.  In fact, for 2 or 3 days, we were picking over 200 pounds over mushrooms…each day!   On our farm, in addition to starting our own bags (ie innoculating the straw ourselves), we sometimes bring in bags that have already been started.  Such was the case with this batch.  For the benefit of those who are new to this blog, I thought I’d take you through my daily routine picking oyster mushrooms.

As you can see, the mushrooms are growing in bags on shelves.  We have four growing rooms running at the moment.  Each has specific environmental conditions for optimum growing, including air flow, temperature, and air moisture via misters.

I pick the mushrooms directly into boxes, which are then weighed.  We sell the blues in 2 pound boxes, and over the years, I’ve become pretty good at eye-balling what 2 pounds looks like in the box.  The boxes are weighed, a lid is put on, and they are stored in the refrigerated cooler until they are shipped to our wholesaler.


So now that you know how I spend part of my mornings, I’ll share something else I was very proud of today.  On March 8 of this year, I seeded some Napa Cabbage in the greenhouse, and today,


A few of the outer leaves had holes in them from the flea beetles, which are very fond of anything in the Brassicaceae (ie cabbage) family, such as radishes, bok choy, brussel sprouts.  Nothing is wasted on our farm – the chickens made short work of the chewed leaves.

Most of us have a favourite Napa Cabbage salad recipe.  I adapted one that I’ve got by using honey to replace the sugar in the recipe.  I used sesame seed oil, rice vinegar, tamari sauce and some honey.  To the finely chopped cabbage, I added some green onions from the garden, a few Ontario cherry tomatoes and some pea shoots (grown by a friend and also one of my market items).  Toasted sesame seeds and slivered almonds were the final touch.  So very, very tasty, and especially rewarding, knowing that it was homegrown…  It certainly added a new dimension to the “Slow Food” movement, when I considered that I started this salad 3 months ago!

Until next time, happy growing!


5 responses to this post.

  1. wowzers that is one very big mushroom. BTW – Nice Auralite 23 Pendant


    • I thought you’d notice your stone 😉 It was totally unplanned – I had mentioned to Ralph that we should take some pictures, because the mushrooms were so nice, and he went home and got the camera…I mean, I didn’t even have my hair done nice or anything, lol…


  2. Wow, Julie, that is fascinating. It’s interesting how they manage to grow in a bag. Does the bag keep moisture in? Is that the purpose of the bag?

    I LOVE your salad. Nice. Mmmmmmm.

    Thanks for sharing your knowledge of information.


    • The purpose of the bag is to actually keep it all together, lol, as the mushroom spawn (seed) is put into chopped straw. As the spawn (mycellium) starts to grow, it makes it’s way to the holes in the bags and the mushrooms “pin”, or start to form.

      The salad was SO good !


  3. Wow. Fascinating. I’m glad you put in brackets what spawn means. I would have had no clue! 🙂


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