As we transition into Spring, we are seeing the usual crazy mix of cool, warm, wet, sunny, and sometimes (like yesterday) outright hot! We aren’t anticipating full production of our shiitakes until perhaps June, but we certainly are seeing a few early ones popping out. They mostly are showing a cracked pattern on the surface, which turns out to be something called ‘flower donko’ and usually happen under cool, windy conditions – definitely a good descriptor for our weather so far! These are often prized by chefs as a top-grade mushroom, but we aren’t waiting around to evaluate – the first few went to this morning’s breakfast omelets. As we move into planned production, we’ll be using fruiting blankets to keep the humidity a little higher on the developing mushrooms, so are likely to see less of the cracking pattern. We are so looking forward to trying out some of the delicious-sounding recipes, whether traditional Asian cuisine or other exciting dishes.
Wintonbury Farm is a small, family-owned operation dedicated to producing high quality, naturally-grown forest shiitake mushrooms for health-conscious consumers and high-end restaurants through direct restaurant sales, local food markets, and farmer’s markets in northern New York State. Our mission is to cultivate a high-demand product that is regionally recognized for superior quality and reliable supply while sharing our passion for local food, organic principles, and sustainable farm and forest management practices.