Growing Oyster Mushrooms
Updated: Jul 22, 2020
1) I've never tried growing Oyster Mushrooms
2) I've never successfully grown Oyster Mushrooms
3) None of these information is absolutely credible, but worth a try
4) In this post, success is based on the growth of the mushroom till harvest and in possible continuation for consumption purposes. Comments provided are summarized and may be altered based on my 2 cents horti-brain opinions.
5) Information below does not help the Oyster Mushrooms taste better because that's a whole new story to tell
Pearl Oyster Mushroom (Pleurotus ostreatus) are also sometimes called the common Oyster mushroom, winter Oyster mushroom, or grey Oyster mushroom. The internet says they are beginner friendly but i think it still requires monitoring and effort to ensure your mushrooms grow successfully.
Like, you need it to be moist but at the same time you need to give them good ventilation and at the same time no need sunlight but when fruiting need sunlight and not too hot you know. Yup can try growing in your toilet.
Common problems when growing mushrooms are when green mould start to grow. The green mould will outgrow your mushrooms and take over the container, so your growth will likely fail. If it happens, start all over again!
This is what they mean by beginner friendly - cos the mushroom easy and fast to grow out! Not because you require less effort. Ya, nabei.
Basic growing conditions of Pleurotus ostreatus
Sun Exposure: Shade, a little sunlight during fruiting
Soil Type: Straw, sawdust, coffee grounds are often used for DIY. Almost any other something like that material can be used. The kinds that are rich in nutrients and can retain moisture and provide aeration. Depends on what is convenient for you and if the process of sterilizing is easy i guess.
Soil pH: about 5.5 and 6.5
Temperature: ~ 55 to 65 °F or 10 – 25°C. Warmer temperature during fruiting.
Humidity: 80% ~ 90%. Fresh air (oxygen) is still needed to induce fruiting!
What you'll need to grow (Pearl) Oyster Mushrooms:
Of course, prepare your materials before we get into business.
There's a lot of home formulas, but the idea is there.
Mushroom spawns (Grain spawn will produce bigger yields than sawdust spawn but they are more expensive.)
Your chosen media type/substrate material
Growing containers (you can recycle, make or purchase)
There are generally 3 stages in growing oyster mushrooms:
The entire process would take about 5-8 weeks?
1) Inoculation - to introduce the spawn into the substrate material Pasteurize/Sterilize all your growing materials before you start work to prevent any other microorganisms from interfering and growing. Aka contamination. This includes your hands, tools, the media you are using. EVERYTHING involved. You can google how to sterilize and how long is the process with the media you chose. Cardboard also can. Also must put in hot water. Please cool it to room temperature before putting your spawns.
Oyster mushrooms are known as ‘primary decomposers’ which means means that they are one of the first organisms to grow in when a tree or plant has died. WHICH also means that they are not good at competing with other moulds and bacteria – that is why pasteurisation is so important).
After that, start mixing your substrate and spawns together, then keep it a bag (to retain moisture) then put the bag in your aerated container. You need some holes in your container because then you can see the first fruit popping out from the holes.
Hmm I think agar agar your spawn and media ratio to be about 50% 50% or 40% spawn 60% media to save money? Of course the more spawn you put the faster it will colonise.
2) Incubation - for development of "roots" and colonising of the spawns Cultivate (just put in the bag in the dark and wait, lol) your spawns until they grow mycelium (their vegetative parts) and colonise the entire media.
Idk why they say 10-25 degrees is warm but yeah they need to be put in a warm place to incubate. Depending on the mushroom variety, humidity and temperature, this process should take between 1 to 3 weeks.
You don't need light at this stage yet. What happens if you have light? I don't know, you try?
Tip: If there are excess condensation, pour it out.
Good to check on them daily. If it does not colonize completely, wait until it does. Check on them daily for BASIC needs like check if there are water requirement or pest infestations etc. 10% contamination should still be acceptable but don't let it spread i guess. Remove as soon as you see.
3) Fruiting - emergence of them mushrooms
It takes about 7 days for the mushroom to grow to harvesting-size from the first Primordia.
They will need a little bit of light when fruiting but not direct sunlight. Enough light for you to read a book. When it's fruitting, it is important to keep the environment constantly moist at this point and provide enough aeration for it to grow bigger. But don't spray water directly on the mushrooms.
Twist off the fruits, don't tear them.
Target to harvest the mushrooms before the edge of the mushrooms go wavy
Twist off the fruit
After the first harvest, continue to keep the media moist, you should be able to have a second flush until..... it runs out of nutrients i guess?