Garden Academy. Growing shiitake in home garden and food forest, by Albert Bates, on 15th September in Lilleoru

Albert Bates is permaculture master and the founder and owner of Mushroom People, the oldest specialty spawn company in the US, operating since 1976. He has been growing mushrooms since 1990. In his food forest, there are 4 varieties of shiitake and 2 varieties of oyster mushrooms but he is also keen on the forest mushrooms.

In Lilleoru workshop, he shows how to grow shiitake, a gourmet forest mushroom from Japan that also has several medicinal properties.

Shiitake contains all the essential amino acids (13-18% of its dry weight is protein) and is rich in minerals and vitamins and thus provides a good support to the immune system. For these reasons, Albert also has shiitake in his menu almost every day.

The course is designed for anyone who wants to grow these valuable mushrooms, whether for their family or to earn income.

In the Garden Academy we go through the following topics:

  • Scoping out a commercial operation: capitalization and profit margins
  • Sawdust versus natural logs
  • Species of wood
  • Selective harvest of logs
  • Selection of spawn
  • Inoculation Technique
  • Managing the spawn run
  • Harvesting Technique
  • Rest cycles
  • Forced fruiting versus natural production
  • Packaging and storage
  • Marketing 

Of course, the remarkable health-stimulating properties of shiitake will be discussed as well.

The workshop will include hands-on instruction on how to inoculate, incubate, manage, harvest, grade, and market shiitake year-round. Easy-management tips for home use will be shown, and vital information for beginning commercial growers will be presented.

Log-grown shiitake can successfully compete with large agri-business, and provide supplementary income for farmers in the cold season. Cultivating shiitake also helps to preserve the environment and the ecology by making the woods cost-effective.  

These workshops are co-sponsored by The Farm Ecovillage Training Center, sharing the best alternative gardening and building technologies for living on the new millennium; and by Mushroom People, providing quality mushroom growing supplies since 1976.

About Albert Bates:

Albert is one of the founders of the intentional community and ecovillage movements. A lawyer, author and teacher, he has taught ecovillage design, appropriate technology, natural building and permaculture to students from more than 60 nations. 

He is also a civil sector representative at the COP climate conferences, trying to point the world back towards a stable atmosphere using soils and trees, and he is presently representative of the Global Ecovillage Network to the UN climate talks. 

Albert has been director of the Global Village Institute for Appropriate Technology since 1984 and of the Ecovillage Training Center at The Farm since 1994. His books include Climate in Crisis (1990); The Post-Petroleum Survival Guide and Cookbook (2006); The Biochar Solution (2010); The Paris Agreement (2015); and Burn. Using Fire to Cool the Earth (2019).

Since 1972 he has been a resident of The Farm, a pioneering intentional community in Tennessee, USA. 

Date and place
Venue: School house, Lilleoru, Taevasmaa tee 2, Aruvalla küla, Rae vald

The course will start in School house and the practical part will continue in permaculture garden.

Payment info
Participation fee: 

The fee includes lunch.

Registration and additional info

Info and registration: Miina Leesment,, +372 5558 4895.