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






2.5 ft.
of space, equivalent to 10 ft. x 10 ft. x
This figure is helpful in sizing a
chamber. An additional 25% allowance should
of straw,
be made for variation in the chop size
air plenums, and
of wheat straw
square foot growing room. Most growers
growing rooms to no more than 1/4th of total
air volume. I prefer to fill to only 1/8th of capacity. This means that for every 8 air spaces, 1
space is occupied by substrate. (In other
the ratio of air-to-substrate space is 7:1).

The classic Phase II room has a raised

false floor, screened several inches above the
true floor upon which steam pipes are situated. (See Figures 148—150). The walls and
ceiling are well insulated. The interior pan-

els are made of heat resistant, water-proof
materials. Many convert shipping containers

used to ferry cargo on ships into Phase II
chambers. Others custom build their own

steam rooms. Another important feature is a

floor drain fitted with a gate valve. This
valve prevents contamination from being

drawn in during and after pasteurization.

Boilers provide live steam, dispersed
through the pipes, and into the straw, which can
be filled to a depth as great as 8 ft. The greater
the depth, the longer heat takes to penetrate to
the center. Heat penetration can be enhanced
with high-pressure blowers. Multiple thermometers are inserted in at least three, various
locations: low (within 4-6 inches), midway,
and high (within 12-24 inches of the top surface). These temperature probes should be
monitored periodically to gather data for the
generation of a pasteurization profile specific
to each run. Over time, the temperature points
of each successful batch are accumulated for
establishing a baseline for future operations.
When steam is injected, the outer edges of
the straw mass heat up first. An outer shell of
high temperature forms, and over time increasingly enlarges towards the center. Early on in
the Phase II process, three thermometers can
read a range from room temperature to 160° F.
(710 C.) simultaneously. This temperature differential must be monitored carefully. The

soaking and pasteurizing straw. After pasteurization,
Figure 148. Profile of an automated bulk processing system for
rotating, teethed cylinders which throw the straw
the steamed mass is pulled via a netted floor into two outwardlyother fruiting vessels could just as well be used.
onto conveyors. In this case columns are filled, although trays or

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