Here is a project that will keep the gardener busy during this time of year .Have you ever given consideration to growing mushrooms? Just think your very own mushrooms whenever you needed them for cooking and salads. You can easily grow mushrooms outdoors but I think you are better off growing mushrooms indoors. You completely avoid the insects and diseases that are prevalent outdoors. I am not entertaining growing wild mushrooms but growing mushrooms that you know are safe to consume like shiitake, oyster or portabella.
It would be wise to try your hand at growing amanita mushrooms inside in the beginning and maybe later you can graduate to the outdoors. You can learn to be a mycologist by researching and studying the different species so that you have the ability to identify the poisonous wild mushrooms that find their way into your patch of cultivated fungi. Incidentally a mycologist is one who makes a study of fungi.
I think it best to cover just growing mushrooms indoors. The first method of growing mushrooms would be buy spawn, germinated mushroom spores, and using a growing medium such as sawdust, compost or newspaper to begin your growing mushrooms. Spawn can be procured from numerous websites selling mushrooms and should be accompanied by very detailed instructions. Always check to make sure that complete instructions, helpful information or supplies are included. You should never purchase from any vendor if you are not going to receive the complete package.
Now my approach in growing mushrooms, at least in the beginning, is to purchase a mushroom kit which is designed to immediately allow starting with the growing phase. A kit will include all the required components to grow several crops of mushrooms. There are many types of mushroom kits available but the most popular are the shiitake, oyster and portabella. These kits will allow you to grow several crops over an eight to twelve week period.
The benefits of growing mushrooms is not only from the satisfaction of a successful crop but can be good for the health.Mushrooms are very nutritious and are low in calories, with a very small amount of fat and cholesterol. A basic serving of five small mushrooms contains 2 grams of protein, just about as much potassium as a banana and three B vitamins. Mushrooms also are a valuable source of selenium, a nutrient found in meats that may be in short supply in vegetarian diets.
The other benefits in growing mushrooms comes from the delicious and innovative ways you can prepare them for consumption. They are outstanding in salads or how about cooking up some portabella on the stove with some port wine and Worcestershire sauce and then fill them with a mixture of onions,garlic,peppers,more mushrooms,and spinach all chopped and bake in the oven
for about 10 minutes. It is truly almost like eating a small steak. If you purchase the same mushrooms in your local store, they are already 5-6 days old. Growing mushrooms can be a great hobby which could also become a small business.