Growing Mushrooms (Tips and Tricks)

In an effort to be a little more connected to our food, and as a fun science project, the Kindergarten Kiddo and I decided to raise some mushrooms. These guys (bought on Amazon and from a company called Back to the Roots) grow very quickly so I took the opportunity to experiment with time-lapse. This time-lapse was taken with the OSnap! Time Lapse app on an iPad 2. I was trying out the “simple” time-lapse as opposed to the more complicated (but nicer-looking) one with my camera and an intervalometer (which I might still do).

Growing the mushrooms was pretty fun too because of the quickness of their development. It took us a while to get it going though, more than the purported 10 days to mushrooms. In total I think we spent nearly a month and three water submersions of the “brick” where they sprout from. I contacted customer service and they helped me out but even then it took an extra nearly two weeks for them to sprout. Back to the Roots, though, being a great company, sent me a new kit to try out (before my first kit sprouted).

Growing Mushrooms tips and tricks

  • Moistness is key. We had a few pinheads dry up even though we misted twice a day like the instructions said. I upped the misting to four times a day and they did much better. 
  • Air circulation. It started to get warm in our spare bathroom where I set up the lighting for the time lapse and so I needed to open a window to get some fresh air going. Mushrooms breathe oxygen, not carbon dioxide like plants.
  • Mushrooms have a circadian rhythm. I originally set up the lighting so it would be consistent throughout the video and not flicker around like it does but I think the mushrooms were doing better when there was more light sometimes and less light other times so I left a window partially uncovered. Makes for a not-so-great time lapse but a nice crop of mushrooms.
  • Twist off, don’t cut. When you are ready to harvest, twist the mushrooms off so the stumps still have the ability to become more mushrooms.

Mmmmm. Just looking at them makes me think fritatta 😉

Today I used:

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  1. Pingback: New Mushrooms! And spores. | One Crafty Thing

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