The road to self sustainability starts with you and the creation of your own garden flourishing with fruits and vegetables. Growing edible mushrooms are a great addition to your vegetable garden or, if you are just starting, it can be one of your first projects.
Grow Edible Mushrooms
The first thing you will need to do is decide what type of mushroom you want to grow. You can choose from a wide variety including Button, Oyster and Wild Mushrooms.
This is very important because each mushroom has its own likes and dislikes and will effect things such as what kind of compost you will need to use.
For the sake of this article, Button mushrooms are the chosen type simply because they are one of the easiest types of mushroom to grow.
How to grow edible mushrooms?
In order to grow your button mushrooms, you will need the following:
- Dried mushroom spawn (Because mushrooms are fungi, there are no seeds. Browse the internet and find a supplier near you. Do not worry, mushroom spores are inexpensive.)
- Growing tray (It should be about 2 x3 feet and between six and eight inches deep.)
- A water mister (This can be in the form of a simple spray bottle.)
- Peat moss (This is a manufactured product specifically for gardens. Stop at your local nursery for this.)
- A flat object, be it a piece of wood or plastic
Place the compost in the growing tray and make sure that it is wet. Do not try to create a mudslide though. Now evenly distribute the mushroom spawn flakes and press it down with your flat object (piece of wood) and keep it there.
Edible mushrooms that grow on trees
Check it daily and spray it with water over the next two to three weeks. The ideal temperatures are between 65 and 70 F, so make sure your growing tray is in a warm place.
After the two to three weeks have past, you should be able to see a white webbing covering the surface of the soil.
This is where the Peat Moss comes in. Make sure that it is moist before you apply a layer. The layer needs to be about one and a half inches thick. Then cover this layer with moist newspaper. You will have to spray the newspaper at least twice a day.
Let 10 days pass and take off the newspaper. Spray the entire content of the growing tray twice a day and before you know it, your mushrooms will start to grow.
You can pick them when they are big enough for your needs and new ones will grow in the following 14 days.
Many suggest investing in a mushroom growing kit. It supplies all the information you will need on growing your mushrooms and will ensure that your new mushroom growing project is a success.
One of the absolute best mushroom resources for kits and further information is at mushroom extraordinaire, Paul Stamets’ website, Fungi Perfecti.
Article by ANNABEL SCHOEMAN