All about Mushrooms and How to Grow it
Building a mushroom farm in Minecraft can be very fun that you want to grow it at home. Mushrooms are good for your health and delicious. Therefore, you must try to grow it. Some of you may think that growing this type of vegetable is difficult. But, once you find out the steps of how to grow mushrooms, you will be able to grow it successfully. As a result, you will have a nice harvest.
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Everything about Mushrooms You Must Know?
Mushrooms are members of fungi. They are different from other vegetable plants. They do not have leaves, stems, and flowers. They are actually the fruiting bodies of organisms that are hidden in the soil or decomposing materials, for example rotting leaves and rotting trees. Therefore, if you want to be successful in performing the steps of how to grow mushrooms, you must get to know more about it.
1. Parts of Mushrooms
Since mushrooms have different parts of body compared to other vegetable plants. It is important for you to know what they are before starting the process of how to grow mushrooms.
It is the upper part of mushrooms. Its shape is similar to a cap. There are pores or gills on the underside of a cap. When the mushrooms are matured, these structures will release the spores.
It is the stem of mushrooms. Different mushrooms have different characteristics of stipe. Young mushrooms usually have tender stems. But, the older ones usually have tougher stems.
It is the base of mushrooms. Mycelium is in the form of fine threads (hyphae) network. It has a function like roots. Therefore, it absorbs water and nutrients from the medium where they grow.
They are mushrooms’ reproductive cells. Spores will develop into mushrooms in the right medium and environment.
2. Growing Conditions
Some people are failed in growing their mushrooms because they don’t provide the right growing conditions for these vegetables. Therefore, you must prepare the growing environment properly when you are in the process of how to grow mushrooms. These are some of the things you need to pay attention at when preparing for the environment.
Mushrooms do not need light to develop because they don’t have chlorophyll to process nutrients. Therefore, you don’t need to concern about the light when growing mushrooms. You can grow them anywhere.
But, it is more recommended to grow this vegetable in a dark room, such as the basement, especially in winter. It is because a dark room can preserve moisture better. Moreover, certain types of mushroom must not be exposed to direct sunlight.
Moisture plays an important role in the process of how to grow mushrooms. If you don’t provide a moist environment for this vegetable to grow, you will not have any harvest of mushrooms. Different types of mushrooms usually require different level of moisture.
It is essential for you to grow mushrooms in the right temperature. Different mushrooms require different temperature to grow. Button mushrooms usually need cooler temperature than shiitake mushrooms.
Mushrooms need different composition of nutrients compared to common vegetable plants. They require starch, sugar, protein, nitrogen, and fats. If you plan to grow mushrooms at home, you need to make sure that you provide growing medium that is rich in nutrients.
There are choices of mediums that you can use to grow mushrooms. However, not all mushrooms need the same mediums. Some of them will thrive in a log. Meanwhile, others may prefer compost.
3. Poisonous Mushrooms
Not all mushrooms are safe to eat. Some of them are poisonous. Those which contain toxic are usually wild mushrooms. There are no certain signs that show a mushroom is poisonous. Some of them even have some resemblance to the edible ones. These are some of the poisonous mushrooms that are commonly known.
Amanita phalloides is a poisonous mushroom. It looks like some edible mushrooms. However, consuming it can cause death. That’s why it is also known as death cap.
Meanwhile certain mushrooms can cause hallucination if eaten. It is because they contain hallucinogen and psychoactive. They are grouped as psychedelic mushrooms. Some of them are in the genus of Psilocybin. Meanwhile, people usually call them as magic mushrooms or shrooms.
These mushrooms can cause effects on the body and mind. Some of the physical effects are nausea, muscle weakness, increased blood pressure and heart rates, drowsiness, and lack of coordination. Meanwhile, some of the mental effects are visual or auditory hallucination, euphoria, panic reactions, and paranoia.
The effects above usually last for certain period of time. However, their intensity cannot be measured. Some mushrooms caused more intense effects than the other. And most importantly, it is illegal to possess and consume them.
Conditionally Edible Mushrooms
There are some poisonous mushrooms that are edible. The poison of these fungi will disappear once they are cooked. Some of them are tawny grisette, the blusher, wood blewit, and field blewit.
4. Mushroom Types
There are various edible mushrooms that you can grow. They require different growing conditions. Moreover, they also have different characteristics. As a result, before you start the process of how to grow mushrooms, you must know everything about them. These are some popular choices of mushrooms you can grow at home.
If you are a beginner, it is recommended for you to grow oyster mushrooms. They can adapt to wide range of temperature, from 20o C to 30o C. These mushrooms usually fruit in the spring to fall. Therefore, the best time to grow them is in early spring to late summers
Oyster mushrooms are available in various colors. You can grow black oysters, white oysters, pink oysters, and yellow oysters. All of them require high level of moisture, between 55% and 70%. Moreover, you will need a mix of sawdust substrates. You can grow oysters indoors, such as garage, dark cabinet, and cellar.
Oysters take 2 to 3 months to fruit if you use the best substrates. But, if you use logs of wood, it can takes to 6 months.
This particular mushroom is very popular but expensive. But, if you grow it at home, you can enjoy it freely without spending too much money. Shiitake is best grown in winter. It usually fruits in mid-summer. The best medium to grow it is on logs. It is recommended to use oak, chestnut, beech, sweet gum, and ash wood. Shiitake will fruit in about 6 to 12 months.
You can harvest them a couple times a year. They will continue fruiting every summer for 3 to 7 years. Shiitake is best grown outdoors. You can place the logs in sheds or under tall trees. If you are impatient with it, you can get shiitake grow kit. It only takes 3 months to grow this mushroom if you use this grow kit.
This type of mushroom is pretty easy to grow, especially if you use the grow kit. Its shape is unique, like a lion’s mane. This mushroom requires high humidity, about 85%. However, you must be careful in spraying water in order to keep the environment humid. This mushroom will suffer from bruise if it gets direct contact to water.
If a mushroom grow kit is too expensive for you, you can grow it on logs. It takes about 6 months for this mushroom to fruit. It usually will fruit maximally after a year. You can harvest it for 6 years or less. If you use a grow kit, it will fruit in 3 months or less. It is best grown in an area with temperature between 18o C to 21o C and little light.
Morel is another popular mushroom to grow. It is usually fruiting in the spring and grows on the ground. Therefore, you need to prepare the bed before growing it. It must be located by a tree. Once it is prepared, you can grow this mushroom. It may take a year or two for the mushroom to fruit. But, once it fruits, it will continue fruiting for several years.
You can start growing this mushroom in the spring, summer or fall. To grow it you can use a morel growing kit. However, you can also grow it without a kit. To do that, you can get the spores from store-bought morel mushrooms.
This type of mushroom has small white caps and small stems. It is usually fruiting in the winter. In growing enoki, you must choose a cool area with temperature between 4o C and 10o C. Moreover, it also requires about 90% of humidity level. It takes about 2 to 4 weeks for the enoki to be ready to harvest.
This mushroom has a large cap, about 12 cm in diameter. You can grow it indoors and outdoors. But, you need to make sure that the temperature is between 18o C and 21o C. For indoor growing, you need a tray filled with peat moss, compost, and newspaper. You can start growing it anytime you want.
But, if you choose to do it outdoors, you must grow this mushroom on a raised bed. It takes about a month to harvest portobello mushrooms. If you need simpler steps on how to grow it, you can choose to purchase enoki growing kit.
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How to Grow Mushrooms
There are four methods of how to grow mushrooms. Each of them has different level of difficulties. But, the easiest one is usually the most expensive. These are the four of them.
1. Growing Mushrooms on Logs
This technique of how to grow mushrooms is affordable. But, it is a bit challenging. To perform this technique, you need old and healthy logs. They must be clean and never been used to grow mushrooms before. Moreover, their size must be 12 cm in diameter and 45 cm long. Once you have the logs, you can do these steps.
- Soak the logs in water if they are not moist enough.
- Drill the whole surface of a log to create holes for the mushrooms to grow. The holes are about 2.5 cm deep and space them 3 cm apart.
- Fill in the holes with mushroom spawn (this process is called inoculation). You can create mushroom spawn from a mix of spores with sawdust, woodchip, or straw.
- Seal the holes with cheese wax.
- Place the logs on a shady and moist area. Stack them diagonally so that they form triangles.
- Cover the logs with a row cover to maintain moisture.
- After a couple of months, mycelium (white thread) will cover the logs. You need to keep the logs moist at this stage.
- Soak the logs in water in the summer.
- After they dry up, mushrooms will start fruiting.
2. Growing Mushrooms Directly to The Ground
Not all mushrooms can grow directly to the ground. Therefore, this technique is mostly for morel and portobello. In this method, you need to create a 1 x 1 m bed on shady areas. You can follow these steps to perform this technique.
- Burn some wood chips to create ashes
- Mix 1 part of ashes with 1 part of wood chips and 1 part peat moss into the soil
- Rake the area of about 1 cm deep so that the substrate is spread evenly.
- Create the spawn. You can make it buy boiling a gallon of water. Add 1 tablespoon of molasses and ¼ teaspoon of salt to the water. Cool down the water so that it reaches room temperature. Add the spores to the water and mix them. Close the container and let the mix sit for 44 hours.
- Pour the spawn on the prepared bed.
- Cover the bed using hardwood chips.
- The mushroom will be fruiting in several weeks.
3. Growing Mushrooms on Sawdust Substrate
There are actually several choices of substrate that can be used to grow mushrooms. Some of them are straw, coffee ground, woodchips, and sawdust. But, one of the most commonly used is sawdust substrate. It is good to grow oyster, shiitake, and lion’s mane.
To create it, you need to follow these steps.
- Use a 5 gallon bucket to mix 1 pound of coarse sawdust, ½ pound of wood chips, ¼ pound or rice bran, and ¼ pound of millet.
- While mixing them, add water bit by bit until the mix have the right consistency. The mix must be moist, without pool of water at the bottom of the bucket.
- Fill a 2-pound plastic bag with this mix. The bag must have filter patch to allow gases to get out of the mix.
- Fold the plastic bag.
- Set a pressure cooker to 121o C. Fill it with enough water and place the steamer basket.
- Place the bag in the basket and cook for 2 hours.
- Relieve the pressure from the cooker and remove the substrate
- Let the block of substrate to cool down in a clean area.
- Once the block is about 29o C, you can inoculate it with spawn.
4. Growing Mushrooms with Mushroom Kits
If you don’t have time to prepare the substrate and the spawn, you can purchase mushroom kits. It is very practical and fun to use it. You only need to spray the substrate and you’ll be able to harvest your mushrooms.
Growing mushrooms at home can be very beneficial for you. One of them is that certain mushrooms have medicinal value. Therefore, it can improve your health. And most importantly, you can save some money on this vegetable.
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