Have you been wondering how to grow mushrooms? Mushrooms can easily be grown indoors, thanks to them not requiring much light to grow. Then, you can use your own organic and delicious crop to add to your favorite recipes.
How To Grow Mushrooms
Mushrooms are one of the healthiest crops in the food world; they’re filled with antioxidants, nutrients, vitamins, are fat-free, and low in calories- making them the ultimate brain food!
The main things you need to know how to grow mushrooms and harvest them successfully is to establish the right growing conditions and getting your hands on mushroom spawn (the material used to propagate mushrooms).
If you are looking for other gardening tips, here are a few to check out.
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How do mushrooms grow?
Mushrooms are grown from spores, which are so small that you can not see them with the naked eye. These spores rely on substances like wood chips, sawdust, straw, and grain for nourishment- rather than soil.
Spawn is the blend of spores and these sources of nutrients.
They support the growth of the mushroom bodies, called mycelium, which grows first before the mushroom pushes through the soil.
Spawn on its own could grow into mushrooms, but you’ll have a much richer harvest when you apply the spawn to a growing medium like compost, logs, wood chips, of cardboard with a blend of materials like cocoa seed hulls, straw, and corncobs.
Where to grow mushrooms?
Mushrooms grow in environments that are cool, dark, and humid. When you grow mushrooms at home, a place like a basement is the most ideal spot- but a place like under the sink could work as well.
Before you begin with your mushroom growing, check the temperature of the place you’ll be using.
Mushrooms grow best at temperatures that range between 55 and 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Mushrooms like Enoki grow better in even cooler temperatures, at about 45 degrees Fahrenheit.
Growing mushrooms is a great project for winter, as basements get too warm during the summer.
There are still some mushroom types that grow best when they’re outdoors in prepared logs or ground- however, it’s much longer to process… it would take between 6 months to 3 years in comparison to a controlled environment inside.
Types of mushrooms to grow:
There are all kinds of mushrooms that grow in the wild, and most of them can be grown at home.
The great thing about this is that by growing your own variety of mushrooms, you’ll be certain that you’re harvesting non-poisonous types.
You can grow white button mushrooms, oyster, shiitake, cremini, enoki, portobello, maitake, and so on.
Each mushroom has its own needs; shiitakes require to be grown on hardwood, wood, or sawdust, white button mushrooms require to be grown on composted manure, and oyster mushrooms on straw.
The process of growing mushrooms:
If you’re planning on growing them indoors, there’s a few options when it comes to growing materials to use for planting.
You could opt to purchase a grow kit which already includes mushroom spawn that’s inoculated in a medium to grow in.
Especially if you’re new to the mushroom growing process, a mushroom kit is a great way to start. If you need a starting point, the easiest mushroom to grow is white button mushrooms.
What You Need To Do To Grow Mushrooms:
One: Fill your trays with compost.
Use trays that are about 6 inches deep and are 14×16-inch in length, and resemble seed flats. Fill the trays with compost material and add the spawn on top.
Two: Make use of a heating pad.
Raise the soil’s temperature using a heating pad to around 70 degrees Fahrenheit until you see the white, threadlike growths of mycelium (it’ll take about 3 weeks).
Once the mycelium begins to appear, drop the temperature to 55-60 degrees Fahrenheit and cover the spawn with about an inch of potting soil.
Three: Keep the soil moist.
Spritz water and cover the soul with a damp cloth to keep it moist, and as the cloth begins to dry- spritz it with water again.
Four: Harvest the mushrooms.
Button mushrooms usually appear within 3-4 weeks, they can be harvested when their caps open and the stalks can be cut from the stem with a knife.
Don’t just uproot the mushrooms, as this would risk the surrounding fungi of damage to the ones that are still growing. You can harvest daily to have a continuous crop for about 6 months.
Once you begin growing mushrooms, you can easily keep them growing. As time goes on, you’ll probably need to add some fresh spawns for more mushrooms to grow.
Just be sure to keep the cloth damp. Also, be sure to harvest as the mushrooms appear, you’ll have a steady supply.
As you harvest make sure to use the mushrooms in your favorite mushroom recipes as most harvested mushrooms keep for only a few days in the fridge.