You’ve taken the plunge and decided to grow your own mushrooms. You’ve set up your growth medium and your spores or spawn. You have all the conditions just right. Now you’re probably wondering just how much time it will take until you can start harvesting your mushrooms.
Well, if you like large mushrooms, these can take up to three months to mature fully. This means that if you want to have mushrooms with your meals regularly, you’re going to have to use a little strategy.
The first strategy, of course, is simply to plant a great many mushrooms.
The second strategy is to plant the spores or spawn in different areas of your mushroom beds at different times. Since the mushrooms in your mushroom beds will be sprouting and maturing at different times, you can be assured of a supply of mushrooms all through the month.
When you first plant your mushrooms, whether you use spores, or the more manageable spawn that is sold these days, you’re going to have to keep your mushroom beds wet for about three to four weeks, and the temperatures stable around about fifty to sixty degrees Fahrenheit. This stable temperature and the moisture is what encourages the mushrooms to bud.
After about two weeks or so, you’ll see a delicate white net meshed over the growth medium. The individual filaments, or “hairs”, are called Hyphea (hi-fee). A mass of these filaments together are called the Mycelium. This is the root system that the mushrooms put out, though the mushrooms themselves will not be in evidence yet. When you see the mycelium, you will know you are on the right track.
Nutrients will be moving inwards, and the spores are growing into budding mushrooms, which will become visible to you about three weeks after planting the spores or spawn. Of course these mushrooms will be too small to consume, but once they appear, the growing process is well on track.
After They Bud
Then it’s only a question of keeping them growing. To do this, you need to keep out all drafts, and also cut down on the moisture a little. Watering the mushroom beds is all important in the first stages, and this needs to be done at least twice a day, but once the mushrooms actually start to appear, this can be cut down to misting once or twice daily.
The mushrooms will take their nutrients directly from the nutrient-rich growth medium, and only need some gentle misting to prevent them from drying out. And that’s all that you really need to do. This will maintain the environment, and your mushrooms will grow. Keep the temperature in a steady range, don’t let light touch your mushrooms, and keep them moist. As you can see, mushroom growing can be so simple.