Mushroom Lab

Myco Lab

Update April 21st 2018:

There’s been a lot of new development and new species to experiment with! I will elaborate soon, but for now I am going to expand on species each with their own page. Check the navigation menu!

Update March 1st 2018:

I’ve been busy… 

Both at the Van Eyck academy and at Carbon6 (where I have myco aspirations!) Reishi is a bit of a hot topic at the moment, and not for its excellent medicinal qualities. At the Van Eyck artists are interested in its potential as a building / creative material and at Carbon6 we are interested in possibilities of growing the mycelium into a sort of leather. Additionally I am personally curious about the possibility of artificially shaping the alien looking fruits using constraints and about whacking them into a sort of felt.

Possibly the Van Eyck might be interested in some sort of sculptures made from mycelium which can seasonally fruit. They also have a lot of sawdust which just begs to be recycled! The following are mostly pictures of Reishi:


Besides Reishi there may be other species which could be useful as material, like the tinder mushroom, Fomes Fomentarius. I have harvested this species from the wild and cloned it from the core of a conk. This enables me to investigate potential uses side by side, especially at Carbon6. I also have Ganoderma Sessile, closely related to Reishi, but it is not likely to be significantly different or better and Reishi has the advantage of having been investigated already for a long time in terms of safety.

Also I have started fruiting two blocks of Shiitake a few days ago, have spawned Beech mushrooms to bulk and am doing various spawn runs.

I received the Tarragon Oyster culture (Pleurotus Ostreatus var. Euosmus) and am already running trials with it.

Future prospects regard the Wine Cap mushroom (Stropharia Rugosoannulata) and Enoki (Flammulina Velutipes) among others.

 

Update January 15th 2018:

In the meanwhile I have grown the Lion’s Mane species (Hericium Erinaceus and Hericium Abietis), a little Pioppino, am now fruiting King Oysters and Reishi has just started!

The interesting thing about Reishi, besides that it is a great medicinal mushroom that can serve as health supplement, is that it grows into conks when CO2 is low enough and into more slender ‘antlers’ when there is a lot of CO2.  Right now I am fruiting them in a closed bag so that there is a lot of CO2 buildup and the alien-looking antlers reach for fresh air. I will experiment later with switching between these modes of growth in order to influence shaping.

The following species are already in the pipeline and have been isolated on agar already:

  • Hypsizygus Tessellatus – Beech mushroom (there are different varieties of this species which is popular in Japan, white varieties are apparently grown in the dark)
  • Agrocybe Aegerita – Pioppino – Populierenleemhoed (retry)
  • Lentinula Edodes – Shiitake 75

Soon I should receive a culture of the Tarragon Oyster, a rather unusual variety of Oyster mushroom which – you guessed it right – tastes and smells of tarragon. Apparently the aromatic compounds responsible for this are mostly produced with a carbon-rich substrate.

Below new pics:

Also some agar shots:

The King Oyster culture was supposed to be of the Funchia di Basilicu variety (Pleurotus Eryngii var. Nebrodensis, also called P. Nebrodensis), however another grower with this culture yielded dark capped fruits which is not consistent with Nebrodensis. Too bad if it turns out to be misadvertised, Nebrodensis is a rare type from Sicily of which I am a big fan!

 

Update July 16th 2017:

I made master culture slants of Pioppino, Lion’s Mane and Bear’s Head Tooth, saved some agar wedges in eppendorf tubes and started these three species on master grain jars using a wild birdseed mix.
See updated picture gallery below.

The cultures are all running inside of the martha (the grow tent) which is not yet being humidified. If all goes well, no more agar work (petri dishes) is needed for a while as I should be able to preserve my cultures and get to the growing and fruiting. When I get back from France I hope to spawn the grain to bulk substrate (being sawdust / beech chips / bran / gypsum).

Inoculating the grains with agar wedges possibly was not the way to go though, in case this proves to be a poor method I will prepare a liquid culture (LC) of each and inoculate new jars with that just before I go to France.

I fitted the jars with silicone self-healing injection ports and have canules for my syringes which are basically huge gauge needles. That should prevent the LC from clogging up the needle immediately. Also I have a magnetic stirrer (for just one container though), which should prevent the suspended mycelium from being able to form large networks.

Update June 26th 2017:

I have live cultures of the following species:

  • Hericium Erinaceus – Lion’s Mane Mushroom – Pruikzwam
  • Hericium Abietis – Bear’s Head Tooth Mushroom – Geen Nederlandse naam bekend maar lijkt op pruikzwam
  • Ganoderma Lucidum – Reishi / Lingzhi, a medicinal mushroom
  • Ganoderma Sessile – Relative of Reishi
  • Agrocybe Aegerita – Pioppino / Black poplar mushroom – Populieren Leemhoed
  • Pleurotus Ostreatus var. Columbinus – Blue Oyster Mushroom (this is a clone from a store bought mushroom so relatively unfit to grow)

These are pictures of my experiments, currently I am focusing on Bear’s Head Tooth mushroom (and Lion’s Mane):


May 2017

My martha is now mostly set up at home and I am preparing to start growing mushrooms again!  My main focus is Hericium species (Lion’s Mane, possibly also Bear’s Head), of which I will be receiving a live culture from someone in Belgium.
Meanwhile I might try to clone a King Oyster if I can buy it on the market when I get back from France.

I only have to fit the martha with it’s HEPA filter and hook up the ventilation and power source. Also I need another humidifier since the first one, which I fixed since it didn’t work when I bought it second-hand, is now keeping the lower level of my indoor garden humid!


As I enjoy both mushroom hunting out in the wild (preferably with friends / my dad) as well as cultivating my own mushrooms, those will be covered separately. Go here for mushroom hunting:
http://www.zwonko.com/lab/myco-lab/mushroom-hunting

Cultivation

This is my martha below, right now I am too busy to get started on something new, but I would really like to grow either Lion’s Mane mushrooms – Hericium erinaceus – (‘pruikzwam’, which should taste like lobster and is medicinal), or King Oyster mushrooms – Pleurotus Eryngii – (‘koningsoesterzwam’, which is just very tasty!).

 

 

 

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