PHOTO GALLERY: Mushroom growers, researcher share passion for bringing truffles to Missouri
Thursday, February 9, 2012 | 6:00 a.m. CST;
updated 9:56 a.m. CST, Thursday, February 9, 2012
Nicola Macpherson and Dan Hellmuth, owners of Ozark Forest Mushrooms farm, along with Johann Bruhn, an award-winning mushroom researcher, work to grow and promote Missouri's truffle and mushroom production.
Inoculated oak logs sit in rows Jan. 22 at Ozark Forest Mushrooms farm. Spots mark the locations on the oak logs where shiitake mushroom spores were inserted. After inoculation, logs are carefully stacked on a forest hillside. The mushrooms will eventually be sold to restaurants and country clubs in the St. Louis area.
Nicola Macpherson, the founder of Ozark Forest Mushrooms farm, pulls a shiitake mushroom out of an oak log inside the greenhouse Jan. 22. This part of the greenhouse is kept at 60 percent humidity to help the mushrooms develop.
Oyster mushrooms grow inside a greenhouse Jan. 22 at Ozark Forest Mushrooms farm.
Nicola Macpherson walks through a grouping of oak logs Jan. 22 at Ozark Forest Mushrooms farm. The logs are inoculated with shiitake mushroom spores. *The farm averages 200 to 250 pounds of mushrooms per week during the winter.
Dan Hellmuth, business partner and husband of Ozark Forest Mushrooms farm's *Nicola Macpherson, holds a box of oyster mushrooms Jan. 22.
Johann Bruhn wears a medal awarded to him by the Gotlands Tryffel Akademi while at Dan Hellmuth and Nicola Macpherson's home on Jan. 22. Bruhn traveled to Sweden in November 2011 to receive the award, which he earned for his research on truffles. Bruhn hopes to bring the Burgundy and Perigord truffles to Missouri and has already begun the process of cultivating them.
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