The mushroom cultivator. A practical guide to growing mushrooms at home

Paul Stamets. The mushroom cultivator. A practical guide to growing mushrooms at home. - Agarikon press, 1983

Содержание

FOREWORD by Dr. Andrew Weil

PREFACE

I. INTRODUCTION TO MUSHROOM CULTURE

II. STERILE TECHNIQUE AND AGAR CULTURE

III. GRAIN CULTURE

IV. THE MUSHROOM GROWING ROOM

V. COMPOST PREPARATION

VI. NON-COMPOSTED SUBSTRATES

VII. SPAWNING AND SPAWN RUNNING IN BULK SUBSTRATES

VIII. THE CASING LAYER

IX. STRATEGIES FOR MUSHROOM FORMATION (PINHEAD INITIATION)

X. ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS: SUSTAINING THE MUSHROOM CROP

XL GROWING PARAMETERS FOR VARIOUS MUSHROOM SPECIES

XII. CULTIVATION PROBLEMS AND THEIR SOLUTIONS: A TROUBLESHOOTING GUIDE

XIII. THE CONTAMINANTS OF MUSHROOM CULTURE: IDENTIFICATION AND CONTROL

XIV. THE PESTS OF MUSHROOM CULTURE

XV. MUSHROOM GENETICS

APPENDICES

GLOSSARY

BIBLIOGRAPHY

INDEX

PHOTOGRAPHY AND ILLUSTRATION CREDITS

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

OCR
Pests of Mushroom Culture/331

N EMATODES
Nematodes or eelworms are microscopic roundworms which live in soil, decomposing
organic matter, fresh or salt water, or on living host plants, fungi, insects and animals. Nematodes

can survive up to six weeks without food and are unaffected by freezing. With eight billion
nematodes in each acre of soil, they are one of the most numerous creatures on earth.
Water is essential for locomotion and breeding. Swimming in an eel-like fashion and because
of their minute size, nematodes can live in the thinnest films of water. With sufficient water, nematodes rise to the surface of their environment. In moist casing, large numbers of nematodes are

visible as a shimmering veneer on the casing surface. This behavior is called "winking" and is
caused by the nematodes standing on their tails and waving their bodies in the air. Considered to
be an adaptation for dispersal, the winking nematode adheres by means of a sticky outer skin to
whatever they come in contact with, be it a fly, mite, human hand or clothing. This same outer
skin protects the nematode from adverse conditions.
If dried slowly, nematodes can change to a "cryptobiotic" or "cyst" state, thereby preserved
for years until reactivated by water. In this cyst state, nematodes are also able to persist in high
temperatures that would otherwise be lethal.
Parthenogenesis, the ability for females to breed asexually without males, is common among
nematodes and leads to very rapid population expansion. By this means, a single nematode can
breed millions of descendants within a few weeks. Nematodes can also reproduce sexually, but
not as rapidly.
Nematodes present in mushroom culture can be classed into two basic types according to
their feeding habits: saprophagous and mycophagous.

Saprophagous Nematotodes
Genus/Species:

Rhabditus spp.

Saprophagous eelworms are characterized by a tube-like mouth through which they suck nu-

trient particles suspended in water. These nutrients are comprised of organic matter and its
accompanying microorganisms, particularly bacteria. Because bacteria occur in large numbers in
both mushroom compost and casing soil, these materials provide excellent breeding grounds for
saprophagous eelworms.
In bulk substrates such as compost or plain sfraw, nematodes can be found in great numbers.
The high temperatures of Phase I conditioning would normally destroy them if it were not for the
fact they migrate to the cooler outer shell of the compost pile. Phase II can eliminate nemafodes
but only if the entire compost is subjected to pasteurization temperatures. In a properly prepared
and thoroughly pasteurized substrate, the mushroom mycelium consumes all free water and then
feeds on the bacterial population. This creates a "bacteriostatic environment", which effectively
limits nematode growth capabilfies. In an uneven substrate with overly wet and dry areas,

however, the nemafode's ability to breed increases. Wet areas are particularly suitable for

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