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Guest Vlad

Maitake

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Guest Vlad

Grifola frondosa, commonly called Hen of the Woods, but I prefer the Japanese name Maitake. It has more class. In my opinion this is a classy mushroom. I usually dry it in a food dehydrator and store it in air tight containers. I use it in the winter for stews but prefer to use it to make medicinal tea and then throw the mushroom out. It is kinda tough for an old guy with few teeth left:) It makes a very pleasant mushroom smelling and tasting drink, by boiling it for about half an hour or so. Here is a quote from Wikipedia:

“Researchers have also indicated that whole maitake has the ability to regulate blood pressure, glucose, insulin, and both serum and liver lipids, such as cholesterol, triglycerides, and phospholipids, and may also be useful for weight loss.”

All I know is that I feel better after a glass of Maitake tea.

Guill, have you any information on medicinal properties of this mushroom?

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Vlad, I've known of the medicinal properties of Maitake for years and love eating this mushroom. The problem for me is this mushroom doesn't grow out west so I didn't have access to it unless I took a trip east or grew my own. Now that I am in a place where I can do that, I'm going to give it a shot growing my own. This is a very good edible and being so good for you at the same time is a win, win situation for me. I hope they fruit for me.

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Mary, I feel your pain. Fortunately, I live in Michigan, where they grow everywhere. This past season was the best I've seen in years. Trees that usually produce one, produced two, three or more. I love this mushroom in Chop Suey.

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Guest Vlad

Mary,

Sometimes I wish that I lived in CA or Oregon where they gather Kings and Morel by the bushel, but on another hand I would rather have the small quantity but more variety that we have here in the North East. After all you can eat just so many mushrooms.

When you are drilling for plugs of Maitake see if you can make your drill slip and plug some of the local oaks in your area :D

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Same problems as Mary... never see one of these beauty near my place... be back monday with more info one the medicinal properties of this one... I can maybe try to grow them... I'm already trying to grow oak for a few years... so in 30 years I will maybe try to plug them ;)

...cool pics Jack...

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Mary,

Sometimes I wish that I lived in CA or Oregon where they gather Kings and Morel by the bushel, but on another hand I would rather have the small quantity but more variety that we have here in the North East. After all you can eat just so many mushrooms.

When you are drilling for plugs of Maitake see if you can make your drill slip and plug some of the local oaks in your area :D

Vlad, I have two oak trees on my own property so that is not out of the question!

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You guys are killing me with those pictures. I do live in the east and they do grow here, I just don't find them very often. Last year I totally struck out in spite of hiking miles through forests that are 70% oak. Many of the members of the Mycological Society of Toronto find lots of them but they seem to escape me. A good year is me finding one hen. Clearly I am doing something wrong but darned if I can figure it out.

Mary, where are you living now? I thought you were in a place that got serious winter.

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Guest Vlad

Mary,

As I understand it, the sellers of mushroom growing kits develop their own strains (specie?) of mushroom. If the plugs you have are made for dead oak, I would think they would work even better on living oak. I would try plugging any exposed large roots or the base of the oak. Good luck!

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Guest Vlad

Duff,

Here in Central MA it was a very dry fall and the Maitake did not make an appearance. My most productive spots are located toward the top of two hills. Maybe the oaks are more stressed by weather at top of the hills? My champion oak is about 3’ in diameter and it produces up to 12 Maitake in a season.

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Duff,

Here in Central MA it was a very dry fall and the Maitake did not make an appearance. My most productive spots are located toward the top of two hills. Maybe the oaks are more stressed by weather at top of the hills? My champion oak is about 3’ in diameter and it produces up to 12 Maitake in a season.

We had a good year before it started drying up. I found a couple "spots", one a repeat from last year,

and got about 15 pounds of hens in a couple of days. And I've got another good area to cover this season.

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Guest Vlad

I received some articles on medicinal mushrooms from Guill. Here is what I found written about Maitake:

A hot-water extract from the fruiting body of Maitake was found to be highly potent against human cancer.

Maitake is safe to take for periods of years, improves energy levels in the cancer patient, speeds regeneration of damaged bone marrow, support the liver, reduce side-effects of toxic anticancer therapies, and generally raise well-being.

Mushroom preparations are superior to anticancer pharmaceuticals because they cause no fever, allergy, or other type of side effects.

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I received some articles on medicinal mushrooms from Guill. Here is what I found written about Maitake:

A hot-water extract from the fruiting body of Maitake was found to be highly potent against human cancer.

Maitake is safe to take for periods of years, improves energy levels in the cancer patient, speeds regeneration of damaged bone marrow, support the liver, reduce side-effects of toxic anticancer therapies, and generally raise well-being.

Mushroom preparations are superior to anticancer pharmaceuticals because they cause no fever, allergy, or other type of side effects.

Good source of beta glucans -- some Wiki information here, with sources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beta-glucan

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Medicinal properties... from Fungal pharmacy by Robert Rogers:

-highly effective against the malarial parasite P. falciparium...

-Cox2 inhibitor (prevent the formation of prostaglandin... can help in different type of cancer)

-Anti-diabetic type 2 constituents( especially against metabolic syndrom... lower blood pressure, cholesterol and glycemia, reduce abdominal obesity)

-promote absorption of other micronutriments,regulate intestinal flora, protect against effect of bad nutrition

-hepatoprotective properties, small effect on HepB (recovery and seroconversion)

-interleukin-1-stimulating effect ( enhance activities of macrophage, NKcell and cytotoxic T cell...so tumour growth inhibition against Leukemia, cervical, lung, stomach breast, colorectal, prostate(especially against hormone resistant), bladder and liver cancer)

-reduce side effect of chemotherapy, work in synergy with chemo or radiotherapy)

-Seem to be helpful in Hiv infection( prevent the killing of t cell in vitro, increase well-being and decrease secondary disease, increase CD4+ count in blood...)

-stimulate the immune systeme in chronic fatigue syndrome

-increase blood flow to the skin ( with cosmetic benefits...)

A very interesting medicinal mushrooms... to bad they don't grow in my area...

Be careful... some properties seem to be dependant of the methods of extraction(the SX fraction (against diabetes and obesity) seem to lose his potenty at hight temperature(boiling point)) or some fraction can be transform after extraction(Hiv result are with a sulphated proteo-glucan)

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I found maitake to help me in various ways. I ate soups make with maitake and or shiitake mushroms daily for over a year.My left shoulder was bad enough that I visited the surgeon a couple years ago. It turned out to a combination of arthritis, tendonitis and fibromyalgia. He couldn't operate on it but gave me a couple of shots on two different visits which did nothing. To make a very long story short, I started making and eating soups made with either maitake and/or shiitake mushrooms. They bought the pain level in my shoulder down to a manageable level. I have type 2 diabetis which I control by diet. I noted that my sugar levels were lower. I also had more energy.

When using dried maitake, rehydrate them and chop them in a food processor. They are great in anything that has tomatoes. Soups, pasta sauce and lasagna are my favorites. My wife hates mushrooms! So, I really had to laugh when I made a lasanga using maitake. She thought that was the best lasanga that she ever had! I just laughed and told her that it was my secret ingredient. She knew right then that she had been had. Any secret ingredient used in our house by me includes mushrooms.

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I am one of the rare people, along with Michael Kuo, who can't tolerate Grifola frondosa. If I eat them one day, I get terrible lower abdominal pains, and if I eat them two days in a row, the pain is agonizing and I start passing blood.

It's a crying shame because I had to throw out two bags of dried mushrooms because they literally tear my stomach up.

I found a beautiful, huge hen about 3 years ago. Haven't seen one since. Now they are just photography subjects for me -- if I ever find them again.

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Now that is a sad tale. I love them but alas, they don't grow where I live. :(

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Wow! That is sad Sunny one. One of the only food allergies that I have are fish oils or eating any oily type fish. I can only eat small quantities and no more than once every couple weeks. I have not found a mushroom that bothers me to date.

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Sunny, if you find any this year and can't keep them for yourself, consider sending to me and I'll pay for shipping........after you get your pretty photos that is. :camera:

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Sunny, if you find any this year and can't keep them for yourself, consider sending to me and I'll pay for shipping........after you get your pretty photos that is. :camera:

It's a deal! :)

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That is awful Sunny_one, it is a staple in my diet year round, flash frozen on cookie plates, dehydrated and soon fresh. The flavor seems to get better with age in the freezer and I am sorry you are missing out on a true gift of health from nature. :hungry:

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