Are you a mushroom enthusiast or just curious? Either way, growing your mushrooms can be a rewarding experience. Several different types of mushrooms grow well indoors, and they’re easy to grow. However, it’s also important to ensure that the growing environment is suitable for the type of mushroom you want to grow.
Invest in a mushroom kit
A mushroom kit is a great investment for anyone who wants to grow mushrooms at home. Kits offer everything you need to get started, including live mushroom spores, growing substrate (a nutrient-rich medium for your mushrooms), and detailed instructions on cultivating the mushrooms in your home. The material used in kits is thoroughly sterilized for safety purposes, so it’s much less likely that you’ll grow mold or other contaminants than if you were starting from scratch with raw materials. Most kits come with enough supplies for multiple harvests, so they’re also an excellent value—and they can be reused several times over before needing replacement parts!
Supplement your mushroom kit
If you’re growing your mushrooms in a kit, you can add nutrients to the growing medium. A mushroom starter kit includes everything you need to grow your mushrooms at home—including an organic substrate and spores (the fungal equivalent of seeds). To get started, follow these instructions:
- Mix 1/3 cup of water with 1/4 teaspoon of nitrogen-rich fertilizer (like fish emulsion or seaweed extract) and apply it directly onto the surface of your growing medium before adding any spores or cuttings.
- After mixing up some composted manure or mushroom soil with vermiculite or sphagnum peat moss, fill each hole halfway with this mixture. Place a piece of cardboard over each layer as a barrier between two layers since they may need different conditions for optimal growth. This helps prevent cross-contamination between different types of fungi so that all species have their needs met without competing against one another for resources such as oxygen supply or space under which to create fruit bodies.”
Make sure the grow area is dark, cool, and humid.
You’ll need to create a dark, cool, and humid environment to grow mushrooms. You can do this with a room kept closed off from light sources. It’s also important that the temperature isn’t too high (mushrooms grow best at temperatures between 60 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit), so ensure the area is kept cool enough for optimal growth. In addition:
- The humidity of the room should be high enough for mushroom growth
- Mushrooms prefer low-light conditions rather than direct sunlight
Add substrate to your growing container
Most mushroom farms use a substrate material rich in nutrients and moisture, such as wood chips or straw. You can also use a mixture of wheat bran and water paste to grow your mushrooms at home. The key here is that it should be sterile and have perfect conditions for germination. This will ensure that no harmful bacteria are present in the growing chamber that might kill off your mushroom crop before it even has a chance to grow fully-fledged mushrooms.
It is important not to add too much moisture into your container as this may cause diseases, among other things. Keep some distance between the substrate and its container walls by placing sponges or towels onto them beforehand to get enough space for air circulation while retaining enough humidity inside your container.
Start growing mushrooms in your grow area
Now that you have your substrate and spawn, the next step is to prepare an area for growing mushrooms. Mushrooms require a dark environment to grow properly—they do not need light to survive, but their growth will be stunted if exposed to direct sunlight. If you live in an apartment or house with windows facing east or west (which receive low amounts of light during certain times of day), then they won’t be as big of a problem for you as someone who lives in an apartment with windows facing north or south (which receive more direct sunlight).
In addition to temperature and humidity requirements, there are some other things to remember when growing mushrooms:
- Mushrooms need a fresh air supply; otherwise, they can get moldy
- Depending on what type of mushroom you’re growing, different amounts and types of food should be provided
- You must provide adequate humidity requirements, depending on the mushroom variety
If, for example, you need to increase humidity, you can simply use a water spray bottle. Of course, if you are farming a significant amount of mushrooms, you could consider acquiring some agricultural mechanization to ease your task.
Harvesting mushrooms is easy. They’re ready to be harvested when they’re fully grown, have turned brown, and started to shrink. To harvest your mushrooms, grasp them at the base with your hand or a pair of pliers and give them a gentle twist. This can be done when the mushrooms are young or mature.
If you want to make sure that all of your hard work wasn’t for nothing, there is one other thing you need to do: inspect each mushroom for mold before harvesting it!
You will have to wait months before you see substantial growth. The time it takes for your mushrooms to grow depends on the type of mushroom you are growing. Some species, like the oyster mushroom, can take as little as two weeks to produce fruit (the edible part of a fungus). However, most mushrooms take months and even years to mature in optimal conditions.
Most mushrooms do not require direct sunlight or any other form of artificial light. They only require dark areas where they can thrive without being disturbed by humans or animals.
If you want to grow organic mushrooms, start with a good plan. The first step is deciding what mushroom you want to grow. This will depend on what type of substrate and soil you have available and the climate where your garden is located.
Travis Dillard is a business consultant and an organizational psychologist based in Arlington, Texas. Passionate about marketing, social networks, and business in general. In his spare time, he writes a lot about new business strategies and digital marketing for DigitalStrategyOne.