The mushroom cultivator. A practical guide to growing mushrooms at home

Paul Stamets. The mushroom cultivator. A practical guide to growing mushrooms at home. - Agarikon press, 1983

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Содержание

FOREWORD by Dr. Andrew Weil

PREFACE

I. INTRODUCTION TO MUSHROOM CULTURE

II. STERILE TECHNIQUE AND AGAR CULTURE

III. GRAIN CULTURE

IV. THE MUSHROOM GROWING ROOM

V. COMPOST PREPARATION

VI. NON-COMPOSTED SUBSTRATES

VII. SPAWNING AND SPAWN RUNNING IN BULK SUBSTRATES

VIII. THE CASING LAYER

IX. STRATEGIES FOR MUSHROOM FORMATION (PINHEAD INITIATION)

X. ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS: SUSTAINING THE MUSHROOM CROP

XL GROWING PARAMETERS FOR VARIOUS MUSHROOM SPECIES

XII. CULTIVATION PROBLEMS AND THEIR SOLUTIONS: A TROUBLESHOOTING GUIDE

XIII. THE CONTAMINANTS OF MUSHROOM CULTURE: IDENTIFICATION AND CONTROL

XIV. THE PESTS OF MUSHROOM CULTURE

XV. MUSHROOM GENETICS

APPENDICES

GLOSSARY

BIBLIOGRAPHY

INDEX

PHOTOGRAPHY AND ILLUSTRATION CREDITS

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

OCR
124/The Mushroom Cultivator
The decision on how deep to fill the spawned substrate is an important one. Here again, the
ratio of substrate to free air space in the growing room is significant. (See Chapter IV). An efficient
method of spawn running is to the fill trays 6-8 inches deep with compost and stack them closely together in the room. In this manner the heat generated within each tray remains controllable, while at
the same time the total compost heat will be sufficient to heat the room. Outside air temperature as
well as the capacity of the heating and cooling equipment should determine how many substrate
filled containers can be placed within a given space. Fresh air is generally used to provide cooling
except when it is warmer than the room temperature.

Duration of Spawn Run
Once colonization is complete, the substrate should be cased, or if casing is not used, it should
be switched to a fruiting mode. If spawn running is continued beyond this point, valuable nutrients
that could be utilized for production of fruitbodies will be consumed by further vegetative growth. If
for some reason the cropping cycle must be delayed, the substrate should be cooled until a more
opportune time.

Spawning Methods
Spawning methods, like spawn itself, have evolved over the years. As late as 1 950 Agaricus
brunnescens growers customarily planted walnut sized pieces of manure spawn or kernels of grain
spawn in holes poked into the compost at regular intervals. Using this method spawn running was
slow, and areas far from the inoculum were more susceptible to invasion by competitors. The full
potential of grain spawn was not realized until the development of "mixed spawning". The principle
of mixed spawning is the complete and thorough mixing of the grain kernels throughout the substrate. In this manner all parts of the substrate are equally inoculated, resulting in the most rapid and
complete colonization possible.

The standard spawning rate used by Agaricus growers is seven liters/ton of compost or one
quart/8 sq. ft. If spawn is readily available and cheap, it is advantageous to use high spawning rates
which lead to more rapid colonization. It is also advantageous to break up the grain spawn into individual kernels the day before spawning. If the spawn is fresh, the grain should break apart easily. If
the spawn can not be used when fresh, it should be refrigerated at 38°F.
The basic principle of spawn running is the same regardless of the type of mushroom or sub-

strate. COLONIZATION MUST PROCEED AS RAPIDLY AS POSSIBLE TO PREVENT
OTHER ORGANISMS FROM BECOMING ESTABLISHED. Once the mushroom mycelium becomes dominant, natural antibiotics secreted into the substrate inhibit competitors. To prevent invasion by competitors it is important that spawning take place under carefully controlled hygienic conditions. Fungus gnats in particular must be excluded, and for this purpose a tight, well sealed working area is best. This area and all tools should be disinfected one day prior to spawning with a 10%
bleach solution. When using disinfectants be sure your skin is protected and avoid breathing any
fumes.

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