Terrarium or Casing tek??? What is best?

The Nook : Archives : Casings : Terrarium or Casing tek??? What is best?
  Subtopic Posts Updated Creator
Casing Overview  -    
Grow Chambers  -    

By Dusty on Monday, August 27, 2001 - 08:24 pm:


I have my first ever batch of substrate jars very close to full colonization. I've read a shit load of different fruiting techniques and I just want easy success.

My problem is choosing between fruiting techniques.

The casing technique involves crumbling up the substrate cakes and between layers of soil and vermiculite which is stored in tupperware containers for humidification. It seems promising and easy for a beginner. You can read the one I've read at the following link. ShroomWizard's Grow Guide

I've also read the dual chambered terrarium tek from the fanaticus site and it seems great as well but it requires purchasing an aquarium and some other parts that are more expensive. Dual Chambered Terrarium  

Should I case in soil or should I use a terrarium without soil?

Thanks for any advice, so far you guys have been very helpful.

I am determined to succeed.

By Wicc (Wicc) on Monday, August 27, 2001 - 08:45 pm:

I beleive casing yeilds more fruit per cake, but is more prone to contams if done wrong...

Dont casings need humidity as well though? Im not sure Ive got my casings I just made in my aquarium just like I would do with a cake...

By Glassman (Glassman) on Tuesday, August 28, 2001 - 12:30 am:

although casings require less humidity than cakes, they still need a high level of humidity to be successful. unless water is just dripping down the walls in your room, I would advise that you still create some sort of terrarium for the casings (at least that's what I've convinced myself of).

By Dusty on Tuesday, August 28, 2001 - 03:57 pm:

Thanks for the advice guys, only a few more days until birthday cakes come out.

By whitey on Thursday, August 30, 2001 - 06:31 am:

dusty..you don't need a dual chambered terrarium. all you need is a rubbermaid container. flip it upsidedown and set the cakes on the lid of the container. this is by far the easiest way to grow from cakes. and you don't even need to fan it. all you do is open it up and the co2 leaves the terrarium. listen to this= i grew 3 flushes of b+ without misting once! the sides of my terrarium had condensation the whole time! i opened the rubbermaid about once a day,but more often when harvesting. trust me, this is the best way to go!

By patoban (Patoban) on Sunday, November 18, 2001 - 05:49 am:

is it possible to fruit cakes and casings in the same terrarium? i think i remember reading somewhere that casings need less humidity than cakes but im not sure.

By An guy (Boomer) on Sunday, November 18, 2001 - 06:06 am:

I am not speaking from experience here, so this ain't written in stone- but it seems I've seen pix of cakes and caseings hatching in the same enclosed environment.

I could be wrong- a pro will be along shortly, unless everyone is outside with friends, waiting on the leonids, in which case, it'll be in the morn at the latest.

You could check the archives though- seems like the topics 'cakes', 'casings', and 'mycoporn' had some pix of the type of which I speak.


By Nan (Nanook) on Sunday, November 18, 2001 - 06:07 am:

Cakes and casings do need different humidities. Cakes should be as close to 100% humidity as possible, casings like 85-92% humidity. I fruit mine in two separate fruiting chambers.

By Hudsonismss (Hudsonismss) on Sunday, November 18, 2001 - 08:43 am:

i've been keeping my casings and cakes in the same terranium- for lack of space- and they have been doin about the same as when i had been growing em seperatly...but then again, i don't realy know what i'm talkin about...ha!
cloudy...but clearing...

By Kevin Smith (Canshroom) on Sunday, November 18, 2001 - 09:34 pm:

Hi guys. First let me say that my first jars are starting to colonize & I have some of you to thank for that. I'm going to stick to the basic PF tek for the most part, but I thought that I would try to case a few cakes to see how it goes. I've heard that casing produces a greater crop and I assume that it's because more of the mycilia are exposed due to the crumbling of the cakes (please correct me if I'm wrong). My first question is how does the crop from the one & only flush of the casing tek compare to the total output of all flushes from the cakes of the PF tek? Would you still get more total output per cake? I'm assuming here, of course, that there's no way to rejuvenate the casing, which there might be. Secondly, I was just looking for a good, easy casing tek. Should I try the hongus tek or are there better teks out there? Also if anyone can give me an idea of the dimensions for a case for two cakes, that would be great. Thanks.

By Eatyualive (Eatyualive) on Monday, November 19, 2001 - 05:57 am:

here are some suggestions. learn to grow off of cakes then once you have mastered this move on to bigger things such as casings. the easiest is verm but the yield is little. i would suggest coco fiber for a first time casing. and try flat cake if you want good flushes from cakes. but first learn the pf tek.

By greenthumb (Greenthumb) on Monday, November 19, 2001 - 12:10 pm:

PF tek is proven winner. Casing is more advanced.
I think Eatyualive has bridged the gap with his Eatyualive flatcake tek. It is a really cool way to go. My friend Jimmie made some of his PF cakes into flatcakes. It was easy. You want to REALLY adhere to sterility lessons taught in the archives. The process is easy enough. If you have a few extra cakes to play with, like my pal Jimmie does, go forth and fiddle.

Just follow Eatyualives teks and advice.

Have fun, stay clean, good luck.

By quote: (Quote) on Monday, November 19, 2001 - 01:14 pm:

casings can give multiple flushes, too.

By ion ewe (Ion) on Wednesday, November 21, 2001 - 08:10 pm:

Speaking of flat tek, I have a suggestion.
The main concept of the flat cake is greater surface area for the sporocarps to grow upon. I haven't seen anyone else try this, but you may easily prop the cake up on it's edge...
Cut one edge (a long edge if rectangular) of the cake so that it is almost perfectly 90 degrees to the top and bottom of the flat cake. Of course, use a clean, sterilized razor for this.
Boil a bit of water and throw in four to six toothpicks per cake; cover the pot with a lid. Let this boil for about 15 minutes or so, and remove the picks.
Insert the picks at a 45 degree angle to one of the greater surfaces of the cake; place them so that when inserted about 1/2 inch into the cake the other point is even with the cut edge. Do this at each corner on both sides and in the center if the cake is particularly long. You can prop the cake up in some other way, if you wish, but this is pretty easy.
The main drawback of this setup is the speed at which the cakes can dry out. If your terrarium humidity is around 95%, and you dunk or rehydrate between flushes in some other way, you should have no problems.
The effect is simply faster production, for it's like having two cakes in one.


By Patrick (Valence) on Wednesday, November 21, 2001 - 10:28 pm:

Have you tried this? I think that the toothpics would go right through the slices and they would stack on top of each other. And if it didn't do it then, I'm sure it would when you fanned it. Give it a try. I may be wrong. But to your point of more surface area, Check out my tek on slicing flat cakes. Sliced Flat Cake Tek

By ion ewe (Ion) on Friday, November 23, 2001 - 02:26 am:

That is a most excellent idea, Patrick. Good work! I have actually done just that, but with whole (not flat) cakes in the past. Works like a charm...

You are correct about how the flats can fall apart. I failed to mention the little extra re-colonizing time implemented to make that a rarer occurance. I let them re-colonize after crumbling and packing for about 10-12 days. They get pretty firm. You can also cut them as you have done in your tek, and just set them on edge. This concept is for those strains that like to grow from the top and bottom of a cake. PF classic is often like that in my experience, as long as it doesn't get too squished up against the glass.
Usually, I only post things to get people thinking in different directions, rather than telling them what to do straight up. I can see you are one of those who already does this on your own. Makes an old guy proud...


P.S. Toothpicks are very useful tools in this trade. The fungus can grow around them, eat them, and generally just not be harmed by them. It's like the idea that living peyote cactus should be cut with a wooden knife, rather than a steel one. Remember those potato and vegetable animals you could make as a child... Experiment! Play with your Food of the Gods! It isn't sacrelige when the heart is filled with love...

By Dr. Cubesis III (Newbieshroomer) on Wednesday, January 02, 2002 - 06:13 pm:

I'M Back!!!


Long time guys!! * grin! * Missed this place.... :)
Sometimes life is easier when a guy just stays home, and works
on his hobbies with the phone shut off, and a best of Black Sabbath
cd playing over, and over, and over... * Snicker! *
Hi Quote! Hi Nan! Hope you had a merry holiday season!

Since I have been gone, heres the haps at my buddies place.

Well, just checked back in time
( in my buddies homemade tek books) and it seems less than
three months ago My buddy started this " hobby " Feels like
a LOT longer than that.....

Now he is ROLLING, Thats the way he puts it anyway. Those rednecks
and thier way with words.. Sheesh! * grin * His Freezer chamber
is 80% complete, and is currently holding about 20 12x12 trays
of cased birdseed and rye, with all casings consisting of sterilized
50/50 horse dung and verm. Looks promising. If all indicators
of success are pointing the direction he thinks,,, he is in great shape.
Hopefully he will not only get some of the most unbelievable flushes he has
ever seen on a massive scale... But increase his expertise with a large fruiting chamber to the point he can help fellow Nookians set theirs up.
He is becoming very astute as to the intricacies involved with running and operating a huge fruiting device...

He has also began colonization on about 20 additional jars of rye.
Using Karo based innoculant he didn't see results for four days,
but it's been 6 and every jar is taking off. VERY excited.
He has heard rye berries are the way to go. Though, the birdseed is certainly up there right now in the contest..

He needs to go on another mountain bike " trip " for some more dung... When I went with him collecting the dung on mountain bikes, we had a running joke. Officer: " why are you boys dripping sweat and collecting horseshit? " Us: Well, because we're REALLY High officer! " LOLOLOL!! Dunno if that woulda worked but it was worth a try. Not even that funny now, but at the time... On that particular dung collecting trip my buddy ( NOT ME ) ended up driving a golf cart in circles around me while me and the four grams of EQ in my belly watched the trees rain on me on a clear night. Oh boy. Can't believe he " borrowed" the golf cart. Can't believe we ended up on a golf course.... Didn't even know there was one there, but three hours of mountain biking in the middle of the night can get you anywhere i suppose...

What else?? Ahhhh PICTURES. Done! I know, I know, been promising pictures, and finally they are almost here. Taking them to a one hour developer today, hope to have them scanned by tommorrow or the day after at the latest. My buddy
would be tickled pink ( * ahem * or perhaps another, more manly color ) to finally show everyone his multiple successes on virtually ever level he has tried so far on this hobby. He is a little paranoid posting this stuff due to the scale he is now working with... But he would like to show off a little of his hard work, specially to our wonderful mentors. quote and Nanook of the north,,, :)

Uhm, Longwinded... Well, what did you expect? Tis me, after a long.. fairly brutal holiday season... Plus boss is in soon, have a lot to say, and hafta update the porn or guys all over the world will be sending me thier complaints! Happy holidays everyone, and, good to be back! :) :) :)

By Dr. Cubesis III (Newbieshroomer) on Wednesday, January 02, 2002 - 06:24 pm:

Oh yea,

Buddy is thinking of ditching all of his pint and half pint jars.... He thinks that cakes are prolly
just a learning curve he has surpassed and that he can do a LOT better and more efficiently using quarts only.

So is he right? Are cakes a moot point after you
learn grains and seed and proper casing? Are they even worth the trouble and effort?

He made up and sterilized an additional 6 QUARTS of brf and verm last night just for fun. Plans on injecting each with a full 10 cc's of colonized karo juice. Just for fun. To see how long it takes a quart of brf to colonize. Maybe even grow

Anyway... Opinions?

By Brettiejams (Brettiejams) on Wednesday, January 02, 2002 - 06:41 pm:

Grains and casing are fine.... but they in no way usurp the value of cakes...IMO.

For sheer volume, cased grain might be a better choice, but even that is debateable, I think.

It is easier to squeeze cakes for all they are worth than grain casings, in my experience.

And if you are growing a shit-load of casing all in one chamber, you can get into some real trouble with contams on a bunch of second flush trays all together.

I have done both quite a bit, and everyime I think I'll just abandon cakes... I end up going back.

So I don't say I'll never grow cakes anymore, because I know I will.

Keep growing long enough and I assume you will come to similar conclusions.

The debate rages on.....

By Dr. Cubesis III (Newbieshroomer) on Wednesday, January 02, 2002 - 06:48 pm:

Oh Wow!!

Thanks brettie... Valuable info there... :)

2nd Flush contam problems with bulk casings...
Could you elaborate???

Any kind of preventative measures that can be taken before hand?? Air exchanges more often?

By Brettiejams (Brettiejams) on Wednesday, January 02, 2002 - 07:16 pm:

The deal with grain casings are that they tend to contam a lot after the first flush.... that has been my experience.

The best defense to this is to just re-case the whole thing between flushes.... but it is time consuming, and it takes a while to get good at re-hydrating the substrate for the second flush during the colonization of the second casing layer without contamination.

Youll have to play with your casing mix.. perhaps sweeten it up a little extra for second flush.

Individual cakes just seem to resist cross-contamination when done in large groups better than large groups of casings, especially second flush casings.

Experience will be your best teacher... though, I think.

Good luck with your friends project.

By Dr. Cubesis III (Newbieshroomer) on Wednesday, January 02, 2002 - 07:23 pm:

To Cool Brettie!

From now on in my bedtime prayers... I'm gonna pray for your shrooms :)

Guess I'd better tell my friend to hold on to his jars while he waits for TOTAL success with the casings.. He might need them later!!

We'll have this conversation again in another month or four Brettie!

Thanks man!