Growing gourmet and medical mushrooms

Paul Stamets. Growing gourmet and medical mushrooms. - Ten Speed Press, 2000


1. Mushrooms, Civilization and History

2. The Role of Mushrooms in Nature

3.Selecting a Candidate for Cultivation

4. Natural Culture: Creating Mycological Landscapes

5. The Stametsian Model: Permaculture with a Mycological Twist

6. Materials fo rFormulating a Fruiting Substrate

7. Biological Efficiency: An Expression of Yield

8. Home-made vs. Commercial Spawn

9. The Mushroom Life Cycle

10. The Six Vectors of Contamination

11. Mind and Methods for Mushroom Culture

12. Culturing Mushroom Mycelium on Agar Media

13. The Stock Culture Library: A Genetic Bank of Mushroom Strains

14. Evaluating a Mushroom Strain

15. Generating Grain Spawn

16. Creating Sawdust Spawn

17. Growing Gourmet Mushrooms on Enriched Sawdust

18. Cultivating Gourmet Mushrooms on Agricultural Waste Products

19. Cropping Containers

20. Casing: A Topsoil Promoting Mushroom Formation

21. Growth Parameters for Gourmet and Medicinal Mushroom Species

Spawn Run: Colonizing the Substrate

Primordia Formation: The Initiation Strategy

Fruitbody (Mushroom) Development

The Gilled Mushrooms

The Polypore Mushrooms of the Genera Ganoderma, Grifola and Polyporus

The Lion’s Mane of the Genus Hericium

The Wood Ears of the Genus Auricularia

The Morels: Land-Fish Mushrooms of the Genus Morchella

The Morel Life Cycle

22. Maximizing the Substrate’s Potential through Species Sequencing

23. Harvesting, Storing, and Packaging the Crop for Market

24. Mushroom Recipes: Enjoying the Fruits of Your Labors

25. Cultivation problems & Their Solutions: A Troubleshoting guide


I. Description of Environment for a Mushroom Farm

II. Designing and Building A Spawn Laboratory

III. The Growing Room: An Environment for Mushroom Formation & Development

IV. Resource Directory

V. Analyses of Basic Materials Used in Substrate Preparation

VI. Data Conversion Tables





Straw ( Volvariella volvacea) mushrooms. Others, like the Woodlovers (Hypholoma capnoides

and H. sublateritium) require a sustained resting period after colonization, sometimes taking
up to several weeks or months before the onset
of fruiting.

6. Microflora Dependability/Sensitivity
Some gourmet and medicinal mushroom spe-

cies require a living community of microorganisms. The absence of critical microflora

prevents the mycelium from producing a
fruitbody. Hence, these species will not produce
on sterilized substrates unless microflora are in-

troduced. The King Stropharia (Stropharia

rugoso-annulata), Zhu Ling (Polyporus
umbellatus), and the Button Mushroom
(Agaricus brunnescens) are three examples.
Typically, these species benefit from the application of a microbially enirched soil or "casing"

Figure 97. Phototropic response 01 i-'silocybe
cubensis to light.

riety of substrates. Oyster and King Stropharia
are good examples. Oyster mushrooms, native
to woodlands, can be grown on cereal straws,
corn stalks, sugar cane bagasse, coffee leaves,
and paper (including a multitude of paper by-


The Blewitt, Lepista nuda, has been suggested by other authors as being a microbially
dependent species. However, I have success-

fully cultivated this mushroom on sterilized
sawdust apart from any contact with soil micro-

organisms. The Blewitt may fall into an
intermediate category whose members may not

products). These species' ability to utilize
such a spectrum of materials and produce

be absolutely dependent on microflora for
mushroom production, but are quick to fruit

mushrooms is nothing short of amazing. Although most strains can grow vegetatively on
a wide assortment of substrates, many are narrowly specific in their substrate requirements
for mushroom production.
5. Speed of colonization to fruiting Here,
strains can fall into two sub-categories. One

when paired with them.
7. Photosensitivity The sensitivity of
mushrooms to light is surprising to most who
have heard that mushrooms like to grow in the
dark. In fact, most of the gourmet and medicinal mushrooms require, and favorably react to,

group produces mushrooms directly after colonization. This group includes the Oyster

fected by light in two ways. Initially, primordia
form when exposed to light. Even though thousands of primordia can form in response to brief
light exposure, these primordia will not develop
into normal looking mushrooms unless light is

mushrooms (Pleurotus pulmonarius, some
warm weather P. ostreatus strains), Lion's
Manes (Hericium erinaceus) and the Paddy

light. The development of mushrooms is af-

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