Mushroom log inoculation is one of the easiest and most popular ways to grow your own mushrooms. Mushrooms need nutrients to grow and most mushrooms naturally grow from wood. The log inoculation method is only a few steps, followed by some patience.
First: You must choose your mushroom plugs. Plugs are small wooden dowels colonized with mycelium (the mushroom root system). There are many varieties to choose from, but the easiest to start with is Shiitake or Oyster.
Second: You will have to drill holes in your logs with a 5/16 drill bit. Space the holes 4-6 inches apart and at least 1 inch deep in a diamond/ staggered pattern along the log. (You may also want to drill a few extra holes at the ends of the logs to beat out contaminations).
Third: Hammer in plugs in all of the drilled holes and cover holes with melted cheese wax or beeswax. The wax seals in moisture and protects the plugs from animals and insects.
Fourth: Stack or arrange your logs in a shady area that receives precipitation and protection from winds. If you live in an area with low humidity or rain, you can cover the logs with plastic to keep humidity high for about a month, just to jumpstart the spawn run. It is important not to let the logs dry out!
Fifth: When the spawn run is complete, you may induce fruiting by “Shocking” the logs. To do this simply pick the log up and slam one end on the ground. Then dunk in water for a day or give the logs a few waterings for a few days (it is best to “Shock” them during the rainy season). Within 1-3 weeks, mushrooms should start appearing in flushes.
You may also just let nature take its course and allow them to fruit on their own, which can take up to a year depending on where you are located.