Your own mushroom cultivation in a jar

Do it yourself

Learn how to start your own mushroom cultivation in a glass. Observe your fungus and the development of the mycelium (that is the vegetative parts of a fungus). If you do it right, you can harvest your mushrooms later and cook something delicious.

Video-Instructions from the BIOTOPIA Lab [English subtitles]


You do not know where to get mushroom substrate for your cultivation?

You can grow all kinds of edible mushrooms at home.
Some of them are easy to grow, others are more for advanced farmers. We have listed a few websites where you can find and order the right mushroom cultivation set for you.


Overview

  • Suitable for age group: children and adults from 10 years

  • Especially interesting for: friends of fungi, observers of nature, gourmets and self-suppliers

  • Duration: approx. 1 hour+ several weeks
    (daily feeding and observing)

Material

  • You need:

  • A Sealable glass

  • Mushroom substrate from the pink oyster mushroom (for example available on the internet, see below in the links)

  • Fresh but cold coffee grounds

  • A clean paper towel

  • A spoon


Preparation

Step 1: Everything must be clean!

Everything must be clean for avoiding contamination by bacteria. At first, you must wash your hands thoroughly. The glass you are going to use must be sterilized by boiling it off with hot water for a few minutes. Please don't use any detergents, your fungus doesn't like them at all.


Step 2: Mushroom substrate

Fill the glass with mushroom substrate up to one finger-broadly. If you don't like using your hands you can use a boiled off spoon instead.


Step 3: Coffee grounds

Next you are adding the coffee grounds in a ratio of 1:1. The coffee grounds should be neither too dry nor too wet.

Hint

Three-drop-rule: While pressing the coffee ground in your hands there should be maximal three drops falling out of it. When the coffee grounds are too wet you can squeeze the excessive water out of it.


Step 4: Cover it with a paper towel

Now you are laying the clean paper towel over your glass. Put the lid on it and press it on.

Important

We don't want to close our glass. The air exchange is important for the fungus. Anyway, the glass must be safely covered to avoid invasion by germs and mould. Another benefit is that we are keeping it moisturized in this way.

Attention: Inside the glass it should stay wet all the time.


Step 5: Wait

It is time to show some patience. Place your glass at a dark spot, for example inside a cupboard. Furthermore, it shouldn't be too hot. It will take some days until your mycelium is growing and cutting its way through the coffee grounds.

Attention

Keep an eye on your glass. In the case of contamination, it is possible that mould grows. You will recognize mould by the colour of your mycelium, if it is not white, it is mould. Another sign for mould is a bad smell. When you noticed mould, sadly there is no other option then disposing the glass. But don´t give up, try it again!


Step 6: Hooray, Feeding time!

Your mycelium is white and looks super fluffy and went all the way through the coffee grounds? Now it is feeding time! You should feed it daily with fresh coffee grounds. Take care with the cleanliness. That means just use thoroughly washed hands or boiled off spoons.


Step 7: Get creative!

Your mycelium is great and strong then you are already a successful mushroom grower. But of course, this is not the end yet! It is time for getting creative! Here some ideas, what you can do with your mycelium:

  • Start a new glass (e.g. for friend)
  • Put it in a pot or bed (it is recommended to add some straw as additionally nutrition for your fungus)
  • Fill it in a hole of a piece of wood and seal it with wax
  • Try out what else your fungus is eating

You can split your mycelium to try a few ideas.

Perhaps a mushroom will soon grow from your strong mycelium! That is the part you can eat when it is cooked since the pink oyster mushroom is an edible mushroom. By the way, the spores are harmless.

You should look for a nice cooking recipe and give yourself a treat for your good job!


Have fun with your
mushroom cultivation!


Related Links

You enjoyed the process of cultivating? Super! Did you know that there are even more fungi types you can cultivate? Maybe you find another species you would like to try out. On the internet you will find several shops, offering materials, for your next adventure.






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Naturkundemuseum Bayern
Botanisches Institut
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80638 München, Germany

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