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Nan (Nanook)
Posted on Thursday, November 01, 2001 - 03:26 pm:Edit Post Quote Text Delete Post Print Post Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Spore Collection

Prepare a 1/2 pint (wide mouth) mason jar by making a mushroom cap holder in the top.

Use wire to make a cradle that hangs on the top edge of the jar. Insulated solid copper wire (18 ga or so) is great for this as it won't corrode from the sterilizing.
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The mushroom cap should sit down in the top of the jar so the jar can be covered. Fill the jar about 2/3 full of distilled water, put the cradle in place, put a piece of cloth or filter material over the top, then a piece of Al foil over that. Lay another piece of Al foil fairly loosely over the first one. Pressure cook for 20 - 30 minutes at 15 PSI. (The reason for the 2 layers of foil is that one can remove the top layer to expose a sterile surface on which to lay the cap while the air in the transfer box turns over a few times.)

When cool, put it in the transfer chamber. Select the mushroom you want to use and wait until it starts to drop spores before cutting the cap off with a sterile knife. You can use a fish hook to hold and carry the cap. Remove the loose Al foil and place the cap on the newly exposed sterile foil top (in the chamber,) put on the chamber lid and turn on the fan.
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After a few minutes, pick up the cap, lift the foil and cloth top, and place the cap on the wire support.

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Cover with the filter material only and put in a draft free, dry area for a couple days. A rubber band helps to hold the cover in place.

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You'll see the spores on the surface of the water. A gentle swirl will wet them. Remove the cloth cover, mushroom cap, and wire support all at once (in the chamber.) Open a new baggie and put it over the jar. Put a rubber band around the jar to seal, then draw syringes of the spore water by piercing the plastic bag.

The reasons this procedure is preferred over the dry tek are:
1) the spores don't have to be scraped loose from the bottom of the jar.
2) the unsterile mushroom cap never touches the jar.

Both these things help reduce the possibility of contamination.

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