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Studies have shown that when Shiitake, Oyster, and Enoki mushrooms are eaten as part of our regular diets, they can lower cholesterol, moderate blood sugar levels, reduce stress and enhance our immune systems. Additional clinical evidence suggests mushrooms can also play an important therapeutic role in fighting cancer and other major diseases. If you've ever perused the gourmet mushroom section at the grocery store, you know that these health benefits often come at a steep price, especially if organically grown. Fortunately, it's much cheaper (and just as easy) to grow your own.
Kits are available for practically every type of mushroom (portabellas, shiitakes, pink oysters, enokis, morels and button), and come complete with growing instructions. Most produce a large flush of clean mushrooms within a few months of colonizing the growing substrate.
One of the most important elements in cultivating home grown mushrooms is supplying the growing mycelia with chlorine-free water. This can be achieved by filtering tap water or letting it stand for 24 hours before using it.
(Resources for these medicinal studies on mushrooms can be found here: http://www.fungi.com/mycomeds/info.html#REFERENCES)
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How do I grow Mushrooms?
I don't know how to grow them on my own, but I have read/seen mushroom kits that come to your home and you can grow mushrooms continually for quite some time. I don't remember where I saw this. I think it was a Martha Stewart program. I'm sure you could Google it. Have fun!
I was able to buy a kit once at the farmer's market for button mushrooms and it was really fun. I was just looking up how to do it again the other day and I thought I would pass on this link:
These guys seem to make most of the kits that other people sell, so I bet this is a better price. I plan to get one of the 1/2 button/1/2 portobella mushrooms in September.
If you want to take more effort but do it cheaply, check out the web.
Oyster mushrooms can be grown inside your house on cellulose, like newspaper, out of plastic bags. They can also be grown on stove wood pellets put in plastic bags, once cleaned with hydrogen peroxide, and inoculated. I think it takes about a month for them to grow. They're delicious.
Shiitake mushrooms can be grown (takes a year) on hardwood outside. Small holes are drilled, and pegs with spawn are pounded in, inoculating the wood. The wood must be kept moist. Shiitakes are supposed to be very good for your health.
Has anyone tried growing mushrooms? if you have, what variety and was it difficult to do?
I got a kit from a seed retailer for DIY Portobello Mushrooms. Super easy, and super-fun! In the winter months, usually January or so, the retailers will mail out your kit, with easy instructions, and if you follow them correctly, in just a few short weeks, you are rewarded with awesome, home-grown mushrooms. They are very tasty, too. Amazing difference between home-grown and store-bought.
Where can I get these pegs that were mentioned in this article, to grow mushrooms?