With the cultivation of mushrooms at home, we can enjoy a portion of totally fresh food, with great culinary qualities and very beneficial for health. Some mushrooms also have very interesting medicinal properties.
Mushrooms of thistle, shiitake, reishi, oyster mushroom, poplar mushroom, lion’s mane… are some of the varieties that we can cultivate.
The thistle mushroom is known and highly valued for its gastronomic qualities, is excellent. The shiitake is the second most cultivated mushroom in the world, also known in the east as “perfumed mushroom”, has great organoleptic and culinary properties and is a great ally for our health. The reishi also called mushroom of the eternal youth, we can take it in infusion with medicinal purposes, it is used in the oriental medicine for more than 3000 years.
Cultivation of mushrooms inside the house
Following a few simple parameters of temperature and humidity, which may vary slightly in some varieties of mushrooms, in a few days, we can enjoy our own fresh mushrooms. We will only have to acquire a bag of substrates mushrooms of indoor cultivation and immediate flowering.
Depending on the variety of mushroom chosen, these substrates previously inoculated with mushroom seeds, are composed of different mixtures of wood (oak, holm oak, beech …), straw and cereals.
We must bear in mind that it is a living organism and as such we must ensure that it has optimum living and development conditions. Although these conditions are always indicated by the manufacturer, we must consider that generally a fungus requires humidity and does not like direct sunlight or air currents.
The more attentive we are to these parameters and the more capable we are of adjusting to them, the better will be the production of our mushroom bag.
It must be taken into account that some mushrooms require temperature and humidity ranges that are difficult to obtain at home, such as the thistle mushroom that is cultivated from 12 to 18ºC. We will, therefore, need a growing wardrobe, where it will be easier for us to control the medium.
Outdoor cultivation of mushrooms: terraces, orchards and gardens
For this method of cultivation outdoors we need to meet two essential conditions which are: shade throughout the year and absence of air currents.
This cultivation technique can be carried out by acquiring the wedges to inoculate the trunk ourselves or simply by acquiring a trunk previously inoculated with the fungus. The most common varieties cultivated in the trunk are the oyster mushroom, the shiitake and the poplar mushroom.
Once localized the space that meets the necessary conditions we will place the buried trunk in the ground of 15 to 20cm, if we do it in terrace we will place it in a flowerpot with clean sand. We will have to water frequently and the trunk will fructify when the environmental conditions are suitable for the fungus, this happens in spring and autumn blooming spontaneously from one to three times per year.
Another form of cultivation that needs much more skill is to make our own growing bags. In this case, you do the whole process yourself, from getting the substrate (sawdust, straw, cereals…) and sterilizing it, going through getting the seeds to inoculate the bags and keep them in optimal conditions for the proliferation of mycelium to flowering.
Growing mushrooms is easy, exciting and surprising. It must be said, however, that it is not free of some failure, in most cases, for lack of practice in controlling temperature and humidity, basically.
It is advisable to start with varieties that are easy to grow, such as shiitake or oyster mushrooms, in mushroom bags in which the first flowering is immediate and practically guaranteed. A good strategy before placing the bags is to purchase a thermometer hygrometer (temperature and humidity gauge) to choose the variety of mushrooms that best suits the conditions of our place of cultivation.