6 Easy Steps to Growing Wild Mushrooms at Home
Have Your Own Wild Mushrooms in Just Ten Weeks
Cultivating wild mushrooms at home for gourmet or medicinal purposes is an exciting and rewarding experience. Fresh wild mushrooms are so much tastier than the ones purchased at a grocery store. It requires some specific tools and a cool, dark place for the spores to cultivate. If done properly, you can have your own wild mushrooms within six weeks.
The two most popular mushrooms that can be grown at home are the oyster and shiitake mushroom. (Shown below)
Pleurotus ostreatus, the oyster mushroom, is a common edible mushroom. It was first cultivated in Germany as a subsistence measure during World War I and is now grown commercially around the world for food.
Learn more about the oyster mushroom here.
The shiitake is an edible mushroom native to East Asia, which is cultivated and consumed in many Asian countries. It is considered a medicinal mushroom in some forms of traditional medicine.
Learn more about the shiitake mushroom here.
Here are 6 Easy Steps for Growing Perfect Wild Mushrooms
Things you’ll need:
- Wild mushroom spore or spawn
- Large pan or growing tray
- Mushroom growing medium (hardwood shavings, straw, composted manure)
- Heating pad
- Potting soil
- Spray bottle
Pick your variety of wild mushroom spores (aka seed) or spawn (seedlings). You can purchase these at spore banks. Shiitake and oyster mushrooms (as shown above) are some of the easiest wild mushrooms to grow.
Shiitake mushroom spawn. (Image via)
Layer the chosen growing medium into the growing tray or pan in a layer about 3 inches deep. Place it in a dark cool location, such as a basement or a cabinet. Under the tray, place a heating pad to make the temperature around 70 degrees Fahrenheit if necessary.
Place the spawn on top of the growing medium, making sure you read the directions thoroughly as they may vary for different mushrooms. Continue to keep the tray in the same place with the heating pad for about three weeks, or until you notice they have germinated.
Reduce the heating pad’s temperature to about 60 degrees after the mushrooms have rooted.
Sprinkle a 1-inch layer of good quality potting soil into the tray. Carefully place a damp cloth over the top so it covers the tray. Spray this a couple times a day with a spray bottle to keep moist and humid.
Observe the tray until you notice pinhead mushrooms starting to grow upwards from the soil, usually within three weeks. At this point, all you need to do is wait for them to mature so you can pick them. Mature mushrooms reach their peak when the cap separates from the stem.
Midwest Grow Kits is a great source online for you to find the supplies you need to grow perfect wild mushrooms at home.
Other edible mushrooms can be found on the infographic below.
My article, 5 Plants You Can Grow in Buckets, includes a section on how to grow oyster mushrooms in a 5 gallon bucket. There’s a detailed instructional video included as well.
If you’ve had great success growing your own wild mushrooms at home, please share with us in the comments below!
Now that you’ve got your own wild mushrooms, check out these mouthwatering oyster mushroom recipes from our friends at Pioneer Settler.
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