A recent study on ancient British woodland found that it is astonishingly comprised of nearly 30% mycelial network, mushrooms in other words!
Many people would love to grow their own mushrooms and starting in laboratory conditions with a spore print is obviously the most hardcore route into this process. It’s also furiously difficult to keep things this clean in an ordinary kitchen.
Mushrooms themselves are commonly thought to sit on a fence between between “plant” and “animal” – this is not true. Fungi are classed as a kingdom all of its own owing to the differences between animals and fungi, and the differences between, for example, trees and fungi. At this distance all seems perfectly in order and our labelling system appears to make a lot of sense. However, when we zoom out and include all the organisms we call bacteria and the differences between plants and fungi are almost irrelevant.
How to grow oyster mushrooms from your kit:
Step 1: Winter is coming.
Your kit arrives with a knock at the door – this will be a contact-less delivery, but your spore block wants attention before it sits out in the heat of the day.
Unwrap the block and set your instruction aside for reference. Write the date down, so you know how old your mushrooms are.
Place your block on a clean plate in the fridge, to let the mushrooms know that it’s autumn.
Step 2: Overcast with a chance of rain.
After 24 hours, place your Mushroom Farm out of direct sunlight – on a north facing windowsill is often perfect.
Your job is to convincingly recreate autumnal showers throughout the day – a light spray is all that is required and maybe just twice a day. But use your discretion, in a heated room you will need to spray often enough to prevent the fruits drying out before they can fully form. You are aiming to recreate autumn in Britain, not a downpour during monsoon season.
Step 3: Supper Time!
When your oysters open up to three quarters size you can cut them (or twist off by hand) at the base. Fry in a little butter and serve with a huge grin. Congratulations – you’ve fruited your own delicious mushrooms! Continue to harvest until fruiting slows down and then: plunge your spore block again into cold water to trigger further flushes.