Outdoor Lion’s Mane Cultivation

In this article we will teach you the simplest and lowest maintenance way to grow delicious medicinal mushrooms outdoors. Minimal equipment needed.

Disclaimer: Lion’s mane aren’t the easiest mushroom to cultivate. They prefer hardwood logs, ideally maple, oak or birch. For long-term flushes, choose elm, oak chestnut or black walnut. For short-term growth, you can use poplar and willow.

Lion’s mane spawn also performs best when introduced via the totem method (tutorial below), rather than as plugs inserted into pre-drilled holes.

How To Make Lion’s Mane Totems

To make lion’s mane totems, you will need lion’s mane spawn grown on a substrate of sawdust and grain, and logs. 

Ensure that your logs are moist/fresh, and not rotting. Store them high off of the ground in a shady spot outside.

Cut each log/totem into three sections. Inoculating the totems one at a time, place the base section inside an opaque plastic bag, and apply about an inch of the lion’s mane spawn to the top of the section. Next, press the middle section of the log firmly on top of the spawn.

Then, spread another inch of spawn on top of the middle section of the log. Finally, put the log’s top section back in place over this second layer of spawn and loosely close the plastic bag.

Make sure the totems don’t get too dry, and, in eight to 12 months, the lion’s mane mycelium should colonize the logs. Once colonization has occurred, remove the plastic bags and enjoy multiple flushes of lion’s mane mushrooms.

As a general rule, you can usually expect one year of mushroom production per inch of log diameter.

lion's mane outdoor