This past weekend my partner and I picked up the four logs that remained out in our remote woodlot. They were buried and frozen to the poles I laid out on the ground but we shoveled and kicked them out of place then carried them to the truck to come home with us. I laid the logs up against the garage, under its foot or two of awning, one against the other all gently sloped against a wood pallet against the garage.
Today on the solstice I tried to inoculate those logs. Realizing how difficult drilling the holes was with our low-powered thrifted electric drill I decided I’d just do one log each day. After 1 1/2 rows I knew I’d need to stop at the end of that 2nd row and revisit the process with a better drill. The drill ran very slowly and at that point wouldn’t even drill a complete inch in. For a few of the <1in. holes the shiitake plugs still hammered down flush with the log, but two or three ended up with their tops smashed as they stuck out, shoved into the hole. I sense those mushrooms aren’t happy having their plug ends smashed open, and the wax I got spreads at room temperature but not so well on those smashed plug tops (perhaps due to their wet and fibery texture). I finished pluggin and waxing the 2nd row then set the log back up against the garage.