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






alcohols, ethylenes, and other gases. (See Fig-

While running through a substrate, the mycelium is growing vegetatively. The vegetative state

represents the longest phase in the mushroom
life cycle. The substrate will continue to be colo-

nized until physical boundaries prevent further
growth or a biological competitor is encountered. When vegetative colonization ceases, the
mycelium enters into temporary stasis. Heat and
carbon dioxide evolution decline, and nutrients
are amassed within the storage vestibules of the
cells. This resting period is usually short-lived
before entering into the next phase.

From the natural decline in temperature
within the host substrate, as well as in response
to environmental stimuli (water and humidity,
light, drop in temperature, reduction in carbon
dioxide, etc. ), the mushroom mycelium is trigThe
gered into mushroom production.

Figure 46. A miniature mushroom emerges trom
the mycelial pJateau.

mechanism responsible for this sudden shift
from active colonization to mushroom formation is unknown, often being referred to as a
"bidlogical switch. "The mosaic of mycelium,
until now homogeneously arranged, coalesces
into increasingly dense clusters. (See Figure
45). Shortly thereafter—literally minutes with
some species—these hyphal aggregates form
into young primordia. (See Figure 46). In quick
succession, the first discernible differentiation
of the cap can be seen.
The period of primordia formation is one of
the most critical phases in the mushroom cultivation process. Both mycelium and cultivator
must operate as a highly coordinated team for
maximum efficiency. Bear in mind that it is the
mycelium that yields the crop; the cultivator is
merely a custodian. The duration for primordia
formation can be as short as 2 days or as long as
14. If managed properly, the microscopic land-

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