So I decided to work out how to grow some edible mushrooms just using common sense. I have grown many different plants, I have raised many different animals, I have studied mycology at university, how hard could it really be? Button mushrooms grow on compost, I don't have great access to this and steralising it sounds like a hassle so I looked for something that grows on wood.
Paper and cardboard are made from wood and I have free access to these. Oyster mushrooms (as well as a few others) grow on wood. As it turns out, it is not overly difficult to grow edible oyster mushrooms at home.
I tried a few different methods to grow oyster mushrooms, all of which were free once I got the oyster mushroom mycelium to start with. Some methods were easier than others, some produced larger mushrooms than others, some produced faster than others. You can see in the pictures below that I had a few different things in the plastic bag. I also tried a few different types of card board. Turning a free waste product such as newspaper into something edible is always pretty cool.
One of the easiest methods I thought of was to make some fake logs out of newspaper. Newspaper is often free and is easy to work with. I made it damp, tied it together with string, inoculated this in one place with oyster mushroom, and then kept it in the wood shed in a plastic bag with the end open to allow in air and light.
Oyster mushrooms need oxygen to survive and contrary to what people may tell you they benefit from sunlight. Every now and again I would dunk this in a bucket of water as the mushrooms need moisture to survive.
From inoculation to harvest was only about 4 months, this time could have been far shorter if I inoculated more than one spot.
02/07/2017 newspaper log inoculated with oyster mushroom Day 0
13/11/2017 large mushroom fruiting Day 133
|Oyster mushrooms growing on newspaper|