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elephant man

Registered: 11/07/02
Posts: 3,002
Loc: Yorkshire Moors, Great Br...
Fungi to be used to revive woods
    #3769781 - 02/12/05 03:42 AM (13 years, 4 months ago)

Fungi to be used to revive woods

Last Updated: Thursday, 3 February, 2005, 12:31 GMT

Landowners in North Yorkshire are being urged to look at an unique way of reviving native woodlands - by growing gourmet mushrooms.

The Dales National Park Authority is piloting a scheme in Skipton in which farmers grow mushrooms on logs in areas used primarily to shelter sheep.

Much of the region's woodland has fallen into neglect as the land does not generate income for the owner.

It is hoped farmers will diversify by growing the potentially lucrative crop.


Geoff Garrett, from the Park Authority, said: "This could add another string to the farmer's bow.

"These uneconomic woodlands are declining through lack of management and if farmers realise that through diversification they can make money then that is good."

Shiitake, Yorkshire Oyster and Chicken of the Woods mushrooms are being cultivated in Skipton.

Felled trees are cut into manageable pieces before holes are drilled into the logs.

These are plugged with birch dowels impregnated with different types of mycelium which produces the mushroom.

Peter Watson, from Gourmet Woodlands Mushrooms in Pickering, said: "Where a farmer can sell a ton of timber for ?5, a ton of Oyster mushrooms will retail between ?300 to ?500.

"They are simple to look after and anyone with a felled log can grow their own mushrooms."

'Remediation tool'

Mr Watson added: "They can be used as a remediation tool to improve the environment as mushrooms attract flies which in turn attracts birds.

"Mushrooms can also be used in stump remediation. As they grow they break down the wood so there is no need to use chemicals to get rid of stumps."

But Mr Watson said there is one main benefit to growing mushrooms - the taste.

"Most people eat the button mushroom as that's what you get at the supermarket.

"But these have become a white, tasteless blob. Natural mushrooms are full of flavour."


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