Grow Mushrooms at Home

Growing mushrooms
Creative Commons License photo credit: denn

Ever since my Permaculture training, I have been interested in growing mushrooms at home. Amy provides a nice set of pictures that show how to get started:Heavy Petal: Growing shiitake mushrooms if you want to grow mushrooms outside in your garden or yard. If you have the right kind of hardwood on your property all you need is a drill, some wax, and some mushroom plugs (wooden dowels with mushrooms spores growing in them.) It takes 6-12 months for the mushrooms to grow and spread throughout the entire log and during that time you need to make sure the logs stay damp, either through rainfall or regular watering. If you don’t want to wait that long, you can buy this shitake mushroom log. It comes all set up and “aged” so that you can grow your own fresh Shitake mushrooms in just a few weeks.

You can also grow mushrooms inside. The best techniques depend on your situation and the type of mushrooms you want to grow. Depending on the type mushrooms will grow in wood shavings, coffee grounds, and even damp strips of newspaper. Growing mushrooms at home isn’t difficult, but it requires some precision and some patience, like brewing. You need to make sure that the edible mushroom spores you buy are the only thing growing in your substrate, which means you need to make sure everything is sterile. You can buy the spores and setup the sterile grow bags yourself, or you can buy a premade mushroom growing kit.

The ultimate place to go for all things fungal is Fungi Perfecti, founded by Paul Stamets, mushroom growing guru. He literally wrote the book on mushroom growing.  If you are serious about growing mushrooms at home, you should buy his book, the book on growing mushrooms: Growing Gourmet and Medicinal Mushrooms.

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