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






The Morel Life Cycle

Morel spores germinate quickly. The hy-

phae race through the environment—UP to four
inches per day. Morel mycelium can colonize a

vast territory in a relatively short time. But
when they encounter a physical boundary, a

non-nutritional zone, or competitors, the

mycelium stops expanding. After experiencing
environmental shock, the mycelium collapses

and forms a subterranean structure called a

scierotium. Understanding sclerotia is the key
Figure 3.J. Scierotia of the Giant Morel, Morchella
to Morel cultivation.
crassipes, forming in jars. Soil is placed onto coloA scierotium is a hardened, asexual mass of
nized grain. The mycelium grows into the soil and,
cells which roughly resembles a gold nugget or
after several weeks, forms sclerotia. As with most
sclerotia-forniing mushroom species, this phenomwalnut in form and size. Scierotia are produced
enon is encouraged by darkness during incubation.
by many mushroom species, including
Collybia tube rosa, Conocybe cyanopus,
Poria cocos, Psilocybe
Hypholoma tube rosurn, Polyporus umbellatus, Pleurotus tuber-regium,
(See Figures 42, 43, & 341 ). The mushmexicana, Psilocybe tampanensis, and dozens of others.
The sclerotia represent a nutrient storage and
rooms which form scierotia tend to be soil-dwellers.
inclement weather. They can be dried to the
resting stage, allowing the mushroom species to survive
moisture, the scierotium springs
point of flammability, and upon rehydration, as the cells swell with
mycelial network. Morel mycelium proto life and transforms into either a mushroom or into a new
habitats from peat moss to
duces sclerotia naturally, without the interference of humans, on many
sand to straw.
all the other Morel species. The scieroThe scierotia of the Black Morel are uniquely different than

tia of the Yellow Morel, Morchella esculenta

and the so-called Giant Morel, Morchella
crassipes are dense, slippery and heavy when
fresh, dark and & walnut-like. The sclerotia of
the Black Morel, Morchella angusticeps are
abrasive, golden yellow to orange, light in
weight when fresh, and pumice-like. Although
studies on the scierotia formation of Morchella
esculenta and Morchella crassipes have been
published (Ower (1982), Ower & et al. (1986,
1988), and Volk & Leonard (1989, 1990)), no
studies have been published on Morchella
angusticeps until now. One other difference:
the sclerotia of the Black Morels form by the

Figure 360. The harvested Morel scierotia can grow
to several inches in diameter.

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