Grain Spawn Inoculation
Nan's Nook : Archives : Jars : Inoculating Also see: POLYFIL
Grain Spawn Inoculation
The Life Cycle of a Cultivated Mushroom:
First, one must grow the spawn of the mycelium. Grain such as rye is often used for this task. While the spawn is starting to grow, composting of the manure takes place. Components such as manure, straw, chicken droppings, and/or turkey droppings can all be added to the mixture (but not acidic pine needles). Once this compost reaches the proper temperature, mushrooms growers will add the spawn to the nutrient-rich compost.
In turn, the mycelium will run all throughout the compost eagerly digesting the organic material. In order to coerce the fungus into creating mushrooms, a low-nutrient casing is placed on top of the compost. Thinking it is about to run out of food, the fungus will produce fruiting bodies (mushrooms) to disperse spores. When just the right time has come, harvesters will come along and cut the mushrooms away from the mycelium.
What you need:
You will need to create a hot enough flame to sterilize the needle
tip between inoculations or jars. For this application, an alcohol
lamp is considered ideal, but a torch lighter is also usable. However,
if you don't have one handy then you can compromise by using a shotglass,
glass lid belonging to a cooking pot, or similar heat-resistant glass
The procedure for inoculating a jar is as follows:
1) Shake the syringe very well to agitate the spore solution within the cylinder. Check to make sure that any air bubbles are worked out of the cylinder.
2) Flame or sterilize the tip of the needle.
3) Remove the tape covering the hole in the lid and carefully insert the tip of the needle into the hole. Steps 2 and 3 are done at the same time so the needle is still sterile when it reaches the inside of the jar.
4) Aiming for the sides of the glass (directly above the grain), squeeze the spore solution into the jar while rotating the syringe needle around the inner jar in a circular fashion making sure to spread the solution out around the whole circumference of the jar. You will need to pay close attention not to go over 2-3 cc's per jar. You can position the syringe in your hand so that you are able to read the markings better. It may help to draw markings on the cylinder with a pen to help serve as a guide. Eventually, you should be able to just go by "feel" and come suprisingly close to the mark every time
5) pull the syringe out of the jar and recover with the tape as rapidly as possible.
6) wipe the syringe clean with an alcohol-saturated towel and set aside.
7) Mark the jar with a pen to indicate the necessary information
for your reference:
Now, just repeat the process for each jar until you are done. That's it! The jars are now ready for the Incubation Chamber
Conditions for Successful Mushroom Cultivation
Selecting a Good Spore Match
The jars that show signs of early growth
and appear to colonize at a much faster rate will be the ones to produce
the best potential yields and fruit bodies (mushrooms).
In fact, there is a chance that these jars may not even make it to the fruiting stage where mushrooms are produced.
For this reason, the jars that show the signs of lesser performance should be removed from the batch, leaving only the best jars to work with in order to obtain the best possible performing strain. Selecting the best jar to work from will ensure that the end result will be worth the cultivator’s effort by producing the best possible crops.
By doing this, the total amount of substrate mass can be built up to the desired amount by using the initial master jar to spawn other prepared jars.
Once the transfer is made, the newly prepared jars of fresh substrate will colonize quite rapidly, in most cases, the new jars of prepared substrate will reach full colonization within a week. After this point, they can all be combined together to provide a sufficient substrate mass and mycelia network that will produce better than usual yields in much less time than usual.
This process is best carried out when using rye grain as the prepared substrate since it offers many advantages that make this overall method easier to work with. The ability to transfer grain is more ideal than a concentrated substrate like brown rice flour, in that it is easily shaken and easily poured or transferred into new jars. The ability to shake a grain jar also helps to speed up the colonization time since the initial growths of mycelium that first appear can be shaken and spread around for better distribution throughout the substrate.
A guide for preparing jars of grain substrate, as well as the items needed to carry out the procedure, is listed below. It is a very simple and uncomplicated procedure that is worth considering, even for the first-timer.
Grain to Grain Transfer:
Large Grain Cake Preparation
A container such as a 1-3 Qt bowl works best for this procedure. It can be made of plastic, foil, glass, or a similar type of material.
Step by Step Procedure