Greenfield Community College

Greenfield Community College
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Fungi Foraging & Forest Mushroom Farming in the Foothills of Franklin County

Fungi Foraging & Forest Mushroom Farming in the Foothills of Franklin County

Instructor: Paul Lagreze
Course time(s): 48023 SEE 278-1X: W, 3/20, 2:00-4:00 pm
Seats open
Senior Symposia classes are designed for ages 50 and older, though persons of all ages are welcome to attend. All symposia take place at the John Zon Community Center located at 35 Pleasant Street in Greenfield.

People have harvested wild mushrooms for thousands of years, yet more than 50 percent of the mushrooms we consume in the U.S. are commercially grown in the Chester County area of Pennsylvania.  According to local lore, in the late 1800s Quakers started growing mushrooms indoors, where all the environmental inputs could be controlled.  Historically, though, for at least the past 1,000 years people have cultivated mushrooms outdoors, mainly on the mushroom’s preferred substrate, cured green logs.  The forest farming technique has become more popular in the U.S. since the early 1980s, when suppliers enabled a few fungi farmers to start inoculating their own logs for mushroom production to feed the demand from expanding tastes for new, healthy cuisines from around the world.


Paul Lagreze is a mushroom farmer/educator from Colrain.   He has grown and foraged mushrooms in this area for over 25 years.   He has taught mushroom foraging and cultivation courses at GCC and UMass Amherst for the past seven years.