Shiitake Mushroom Harvest Nov 7 2010

Harvest Report for November

I’m proud to say that my shiitake mushroom block is back to work producing mushrooms again.  I bought this block last year at the Van Dusen Plant Sale and kept it under my deck for the spring where it gave me many meals.  As summer hit it became too warm for the block to be outside and the mushrooms were mushy (ironically bad), so I harvested what was left and put the sucker to bed in the back of the fridge.  I pulled it out again a few weeks ago and in no time I had a number of huge mushrooms bursting from the bag.

These three shiitakes made a heathy serving for 2 after being sauteed in some butter and salt.  Amazing!  They were buttery, meaty, and by far the very best mushrooms I have ever had.  If you get the chance to try growing your own, do it!  You’ll be rewarded with a whole new appreciation for mushrooms.



As for the rest of the garden, I’m shocked at number of edibles that are still growing in my garden despite the wet, sunless days and cold temps.  I’m still eating tomatoes (even if I did pick them a few weeks ago), beets, kale, chard, and of course lots and lots of herbs.  Since it’s the season for soups and stews, a huge handful or rosemary, sage and oregano goes into just about everything I simmer or bake.  I’ve also had a nice resurgence of my Kentucky Colonel mint (THE mint for a mint julep or mojito) and a whole bunch of stevia that I’m not totally sure what to do with.

I picked the last of a few things this week: Thai Dragon, Habanero, Garden Salsa, and Filius Blue peppers – although pretty they aren’t very hot.  Peppers really need heat to build their spiciness, and October/November just ain’t going to give us the spice in Vancouver.


I also harvested the rest of the ground cherries.  Many are still green, some are split from the cold, but there are lots of them and many are big.  I plan to pick through the bunch (and toss the green ones which are rumored to be toxic) and whip up the amazing Ground Cherry Caramel I made last year.  Damn that was good stuff.


There is some nice growth on my winter crops – well, at least the ones that didn’t get mowed by slugs!  Daikon radish, Altaglobe radish, winter turnip, spinach, mizuna, and Gai Lan (Chinese broccoli) are all doing very well.  M y lettuce seedlings have pretty much been more trouble than they are worth, so I do hope that in a few months I might actually get a salad, but if the weather doesn’t cooperate it isn’t looking good.  Boy do I hate store-bought salad.  I’m going to fire up the automatic spouter again this week and get me some fresh greens inside if I can’t get ’em outside.

That’s my harvest report for this time of year.  I look forward to hearing and reading all about what’s happening at your gardens all around the globe.

About the Author : Stephanie RoseAn artistic gardener aiming to feed the body & soul through an urban potager garden & a community veggie plot in Vancouver.View all posts by Stephanie Rose

  1. Robin
    RobinNovember 8,10

    Everything looks so good! Those peppers are beautiful. I was thinking about growing mushrooms. I know I read some where last year that you can grow them in the basement. Maybe I look in to that a little further.

  2. Kat White
    Kat WhiteNovember 8,10

    What an amazing harvest for November. I can’t believe how much you’ve pulled from your garden. Mine is sort of in the middle of being dismantled. Half of the tomatoes are chopped down with the other half and the corn stalks still to go. I think I saw one or two squash still on the vines so I’ll pull those in a couple of days. I think I’m going to let things rest this fall with the exception of planting some onions. The rain cycle that has already started seems to have it raining on my days off. So maybe that’s a sign for me to just wait until spring and focus on other things.

  3. Heather
    HeatherNovember 8,10

    Your mushrooms look fantastic Stevie and your peppers do too! Not much is going on here except my herbs of course. We’re all ready for Winter to set in…

  4. Shirley
    ShirleyNovember 8,10

    Good for you! An automatic sprouter sounds like a good investment.

    • Stevie
      StevieNovember 8,10

      Thanks, Shirley, it was a present and one that was very thoughtful – I love it!

  5. Veggie PAK
    Veggie PAKNovember 8,10

    The mushrooms look excellent! What is the growing media and where can it be purchased?

  6. villager
    villagerNovember 8,10

    Love shiitakes! I need to check into growing them too. They are so pricy in the store.

  7. kitsapFG
    kitsapFGNovember 8,10

    I have toyed with the idea of purchasing a mushroom starter kit for some time now. I live in a similar climate to you and know it would be relatively easy to grow them out. I should ask Santa for them for Christmas!

  8. melanie
    melanieNovember 9,10

    Those mushrooms look great! and what a great harvest of hot peppers. I still haven’t bought a sprouter, :) thanks for the reminder.

  9. Lee Ann Foster
    Lee Ann FosterNovember 9,10

    You have re-inspired me! I’ve been feeling defeated by my neighbors cat treating my veggie beds as a litter box, scared of the contamination and wondering if it’s safe to plant a winter crop. I had such a marvelous time eating the greens of Spring, the cukes, beans, peas and broccoli, potatoes, carrots of Summer, then the tomatoes of the Fall harvest and had planned to do more greens for the Winter but encountered cat poop. Each crop pulled left a nice soft soil for the cat … but reading your blog has sprouted a fresh lust to grow some greens. And I’m with you on the spouting! Thank you Stevie.

  10. Daphne Gould
    Daphne GouldNovember 9,10

    My townhouse mate was thinking that growing button mushrooms would be good. She wanted me to do it though and I’ve never grown mushrooms before.

  11. Emily
    EmilyNovember 9,10

    What’s this ground cherry carmel? Do you have a recipe to share. Your ground cherries look like the pineapple tomatillos I got from Daphne. I have some in the freezer that I was thinking I’d make salsa with later this winter but I’m interested in other ideas.

  12. Stevie
    StevieNovember 9,10

    Lee Ann – thanks for your note. I put some sand beside the garage for the cats – it seems to work if you keep it clean and private. Also, when you plant your crops, cover them with some frost cloth and the cats will stay away too!

  13. radiology technician
    radiology technicianNovember 12,10

    What a great resource!

  14. Ron Tedwater
    Ron TedwaterNovember 17,10

    Thanks for the post

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