Volume 19 Part 1 Article 37
Title: A technology for early fruiting in Lentinula edodes cultivation (Shiitake mushroom)
Author: VP Sharma, Shweta Sharma, Satish Kumar and Shwet Kamal
Traditionally shiitake mushroom has been grown on natural logs of various trees species. Generally, logs of 7-15 cm diameter., cut into 1m lengths, with holes drilled 2.5 cm of log diameter and are evenly spaced length-wise every 15 cm along the row. Holes are plugged with wood piece spawn or sawdust spawns, and then finally sealed with hot wax. Yields obtained from log system may be as high as 33%. This traditional method takes 8-18 months. Another environment-friendly shiitake cultivation technology is the synthetic log production system in which sawdust is the main ingredient; although, straw and corncobs are also used. Moisture level is maintained to a level of 60 per cent. The bags are sterilized for 2 h at 121°C in large autoclaves and after cooling, seeded with spawn. This method takes around 80-90 days time using different strains and is the most recent method for shiitake cultivation all through the world. The biological efficiency achieved in the method is 75 to 100%. In India, the production of this mushroom did not pick up due to its long cropping cycle. During the present study, a new strain DMRO-Shiitake-338S has been developed. Using this strain of Lentinula edodes, with some changes in substrate combinations, supplementations and agronomic practices, the fruiting period of the mushroom has been reduced to 42-45 days with an average biological efficiency of 125-130 per cent in a total cropping period of four months.