Make Supplemented Sawdust Substrate
Here is a Forest Fungi basic formula for learning how to grow many wood loving mushrooms. The ratios of ingredients can vary.
- 40 Litres hardwood sawdust (I use Eucalyptus sp.)
- 10 Litres oat chaff (optional, aids colonization with longer fibres)
- 10 Liters bran (or other Nitrogen supplements)
- 2 kgs Gypsum (Calcium Sulfate)
Supplemented sawdust - method
Mix with enough water to bring close to field capacity-where if you squeeze a handful hard enough, you’ll just get a drop of moisture. I just mix in a cement mixer, then tip the lot into a bin. I tip the bin on its side with a trolley and allow excess moisture to drain off. When no more liquid drips out, I upend the bin, then start loading it into fruiting vessels (filter patch bags or glass jars with filters).
In the case of filter patch bags, I fold them like this, then tape them (masking tape or duct duct tape both work).
You can pressure cook them at 15 psi for 2 hours, I fit 4 or 6 bags in my All American 921 pressure cooker, or steam them in a big drum, such as this set up below with a 200 Litre drum.We put a metal grill on top of some bricks or ceramic pots, add about 15 Litres of hot water, then stack the bags allowing spaces between the bags for steam to penetrate. I get 30-40 bags in, then put the lid on-but make sure you have a hole drilled through the lid! You don’t want to build any pressure in this set up! Plus you can slide a thermometer through the hole and measure the temperature. Get a fire going underneath, such as a gas burner, and steam for 12 hours.
When cool, add 1 cup of spawn per bag, then close the bag using an impulse heat sealer, or tape and twist ties.
Fruiting your delicious mushroom bags: Keep your bag somewhere out of direct sunlight until you start to see little mushrooms forming. A bit of sunlight when they start forming is good. I have shelves on wheels, which I move under cover or put shade cloth on the top if it is too hot. This allows me to use rain and wind and sun to minimize costs and pests: I cut the top off the bags and allow mushrooms to form from the top. If I see clusters forming on the sides, I cut a hole for them to grow out of.