Growth Parameters

Spawn Run:

Relative Humidity: 95-100%

Duration: 10-14 days.

Fresh Air Exchanges: 0-1 per hour.

Light Requirements: n/a

Primordia Formation:

Relative Humidity: 95-100%

Duration: 3-5 days

C02: 500-700 ppm

Fresh Air Exchanges- 5-8 per hour

Lignt Requirements: 500-1000 lux.

Fruitbody Development:

Temperature: 65-75c F. (18-24° C.) Relative Humidity: (85) 90-95% Duration: 4-5 days C02:500-1000 ppm

Fresh Air Exchanges: 5-8 hours per hour. Light Requirements: 500-1000 lux.

Cropping Cycle:

14 days apart damaged in the course of shaking. The subsequent transfer of these smashed fruitbodies is often followed by a massive bacterial outbreak. If the spawn remains pure, then each 1/2 gallon (liter) of grain spawn can be transferred into four 5 lb. bags of sterilized, sawdust/bran. Since this species adapts well to submerged fermentation, commerical cultivators might find the di rect inoculation of sterilized grain with liquid mycelium is the most efficient path of spawn gneration. (See Figure 119).

Suggested Agar Culture Media: MYPA, PDYA or DFA media.

1st & 2nd Generation Spawn Media: Grain: rye, wheat, milo, wheat, barley, corn or millet. 3rd Generation Spawn Media: Grain, sterilized sawdust or plugs

Substrates for Fruif ing: Sterilized sawdust supplemented with rice bran for indoors. Hardwood and Douglas fir logs & stumps are recommended for outdoors. The pH range for fruiting falls between 5.0-6.5.

Figure 347. H. erinaceus fruiting from puncture d bags within the growing room.

Figure 347. H. erinaceus fruiting from puncture d bags within the growing room.

Yields: 550 grams fresh weight from 5 lbs. hardwood (alder) sawdust, unenriched. 1 lb clusters are common using the above technique. With multiple sites fanning exterior to the bag, maximum yield efficiency approaches 2 lbs.

Harvest Hints: If inducing mushrooms to form through minute holes in plastic, the fniitbody snaps off with no need for further cleaning Picking mushrooms in this fashion makes for some of the fastest 1 larvesting 1 have seen. Form of Product Sold to Market: 1/4 to 1/2

lbs. clusters carefully packaged n damage proof , r containers are ideal. (The size of the clusters can be controlled by limiting the number of mushrooms that form on each flush.) The relative humidity in the growing room should be lowered to 80% for 4-8 hours prior to harvest to reduce surface mcisture and prolong storageability. The mushroom must be • ed with great care so not to create a site for bacteria infestation which can quickly spread. Gourmet Mushrooms, a specialty mushroom company in California, sells Hericium and markrtsAe mushrooms

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ canal " Ingestion of this mushroom is said to have a remarkable effect in extending the life of cancer ridden patients. Ying (1987) reports that pills of this mushroom are used in the treatment of gastric and esophageal carcinoma. Fruit-bodies are dried powdered, and presented in tablet form for oral ingestion. A patent recently awarded in Japan showed that this mushroom produces Eninacines (s;c) which are strong stimulators to nerve growth factor synthesis. (Kawagishi et al. 1994.) Figure 348. The 3/4 lb. Lion's Mane pictured nere _

arose fr n the minute hole in tic een at the Flavor, Pi. paration & CooKmg: This is one tip of the knife. With this method, mushrooms can be 0f my family's favorite, gourmet mushrooms, harvested and sold with no need for clean'ng.

Figure 349. When properly initialed, mushrooms form and mature through the holes in tfie plastic. Once mushroom balls begin growing exterior to the bag, internal fruitings within the plenum of the bag are arrested or prevented,

Its flavor is greatly affected by the maturity of the harvested mushrooms, their moisture content, the method of cooki* g, and particularly the other foods that are cooked with tKs mushroom. To some, this mushroom has a flavor similar to lobster; to others the flavor is reniniscent of egg-plant.

We cut the mushrooms transverse to the spines, into dials and cook them at high heat in canola (rape seed) oil until the moisture has been reduced and the dials are light golden brown (Garlic, on ions, and almonds also go well with this mushroom.)The addition of a small amount of butter near the end of the cooking cycle brings out the lobster flavor. A combination of Shiitake and Lion's Mane, sauteed in this fashion, with a touch of soy or tamari, and added to wb'te rice results in an extraordinarily culinary experience with complex, rich fungal tones

Comments: This mushroom grows quickly and is acclaimed by most mycophagists. From a marketing point of view, H. erinaceus has distinct advantages and few disadvantages. The snow-ball like forms are appealing. Picked individually and wrapped in rice paper or presented in a see-through container this mushroom is best sold individually, regardless of weight. A major disadvantage is its high water content and wfr'e background which makes bruic'i"g quite apparent, although the mushroom may be as a whole, in fine shape. Once the brown bruises occur, the damaged lissue becomes a site for bacterial blotch, quickly spreading to the other mature parts of the mushroom. In short, this mushroom must be handled ever so carefully by the harvesters, By reducing humidity several hours before harvest to the 60-70% range, the mushroom loses sufficient water and tends not to bruise so readily.

Figure 350. A one pound specimen oUen develops when only one primordial site is allowed per 5 pound ba" of su plemented sawdust/chi. s/bran.

Hericium erinaceus grows aggressively on hardwood sawdust enriched with bran. Incubation proceeds for two weeks, after which prim "dia occur spontaneously. Since fruiti js ff vertical faces of the plastic bags are more e-sirable than top fruitings, it is essential that holes be punched into the sides of the bags directly after colonization. Should pnmordia form unabated within the confines of the sealed bag, the number and quality of spi i ;s are ad-ve ely aftected. Under these conditions, the spines elongate, are loosely arranged, ad when they fully develop the mass of the har vested mushroom is only a fraction of what it would have otherwise been.

Few studies on the cultivation of this mushroom have been published. Most are in Japanese or Chinese. For further information, please consult Huguang (1992).

Figure 350. A one pound specimen oUen develops when only one primordial site is allowed per 5 pound ba" of su plemented sawdust/chi. s/bran.

INDOOR GROWTH PARAMETERS

he Wood Ears are peculiar mushrooms which have captured the palate of Asian mycophagists for centuries. Extensive trading of Wood Ears persisted in the late 1800's from New Zealand to China and Hong Kong. Although not remarkably flavorful, these mushrooms rehydrate readily from a dried state, embellishing soups and sauces Imparting a unique and pleasing texture to most meals, these muslirooms are a centerpiece of Asian cooking, and highly valued. In general, the cultivation methods for these mushrooms parallel that of Shiitake on logs or on sterilized sawdust.

Figures 351 & 352. A. polytricha 6 and 11 days aner inoculation onto malt agar media.

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