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






Purposes: To isolate and develop mushroom
cultures for generating pure culture spawn.
Facility: A building well separated from the
growing room complex.

ally rectangular in shape with large doors at
both ends. Growing rooms should have cement
floors, with drains, and equipped with water
lines. Electrical boxes and lights must be waterproofed. Internal walls should be constructed

Maximum Temperature: 800 F. (26-27° C.)

of non-degradable materials. Use of wood

Minimum Temperature: 70° F. (2 1-22° C.)

Humidity: 35-50%
Light. 500-1000 lux.

should be minimized.
Maximum Temperature: 80° F. (26-27° C.)
Minimum Temperature: 45° F. (7-9° C.)

Insulation: R 1 6-R32

Humidity: 50-100%

Positive Pressurization: Yes, through HEPA ifiters.

Light. 50-1000
Insulation: R8-R16 or as needed.
Positive Pressurization: Yes, through electro-

Additional Comments: The laboratory should
be uphill from the growing rooms so that pas-

sage of spawn is aided by gravity as it is

transported. The laboratory is a relatively dry
environment, encouraging the growth of mycehum only in protected containers (petri dishes,
jars, & bags). Condensation surfaces must be

minimized. After construction, every seam
should be sealed with silicone caulking.

The Growing Room

The growing room complex can house all
non-laboratory activities within one building.
Each room has different requirements according to function.These recommendations should
be used as general guidelines, subject to amendment. Growers in humid tropical requirements

face a set of problems uniquely different from
growers in cold, temperate climates. Ancillary
storage & shop maintenance buildings are not

Environment 1:
The Growing Rooms
Purpose: To grow as many mushrooms as possible
Facility: Rooms vary in size from lOx 20 ft. to

40 x 100 ft. with 10-20 ft. ceilings and are usu-

static filters.
Additional Comments: Ideally, a flow-through

design is followed, both in consideration of
fresh mushrooms as well as the entry and exit
of substrate mass. Removing contaminated
substrates into the same corridor through which
freshly spawned substrate is being transferred

causes cross-contamination. Spent substrate
should be exited out of the opposite ends of the
growing rooms. Many farms bring their fresh
mushrooms into the main hallway, en route to
the sorting and cold storage rooms.

Environment 2:
The Spawning Room
Purposes: A room adjacent to the pasteurization chamber wherein inoculations into bulk
substrates are conducted.
Facility: The room must be constructed of materials that will not harbor mold colonies and
can be washed down with ease. The height
should be sufficient to accommodate the unloading of the steam box, conveyors (if used),
elevated platforms and funnels for filling columns (12-16 ft.). Cement floors and moisture

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