the choice of the mushroom you grow is critical to success. The easiest are the oyster mushrooms. These will grow happily and prolifically inside the home, in very little space (even under your bed!) on chopped straw, cardboard, old cotton clothes, unbleached paper – or a mix of any of these. Coffee grounds can also be used but are more difficult because they easily go mouldy.
While the easiest media to grow on is chopped straw, this may be difficult for some of you to get hold of in small quantities in your city (at least, it is where I live). So I asked Ivan to show us how to use waste card, which IS usually in plentiful supply.
Here’s what you will need to grow oysters on cardboard:
- space to put them – about the size of a medium cardboard box is plenty.
- daylight (while they are fruiting – enough to read a book by)
- warmth (anything from 10 – 250C, depending on the variety of oyster mushroom)
- a water spray bottle to keep them moist.
- a kettle.
- a supply of cardboard
- a large plastic bag or two.
- a bucket or bowl that will hold boiling water
- mushroom spawn – you want a supplier who sells the spawn on its own.
Varieties of Mushrooms
Varieties of MushroomsThere are many varieties of oyster mushrooms. Two good choices of oysters to grow first are:
- Blue-grey oysters. These are the easiest and one of the highest yielding. They also grow in cooler temperatures than some – anything between 10 and 20 0C (50 – 680).
- Pink oysters (in pic above). As well as being a stunning color, these are one of the fastest-growing mushrooms, producing fruits in as little as three or four weeks. They are a tropical mushroom and need a warmer temperature – something between 18 and 27 0C. If you have a warm house you may be able to grow them in winter.