I’m finally going to dip my toes into the magical world of agar and I have a few questions for all you agar gurus. Basically all of my spores are old and have been exposed to some pretty damn cold temps and I want to get them going and hopefully grow them out and “update” my spore library with fresher prints lol
Anyway... on to the questions!
So the first questions are about this recipe from peacefrog for “Cornmeal Agar” from this thread:
He goes into preparing the agar here:
I mix up my dry ingredients and add to jars of water, stir then sterilize. This is easier and cleaner IMO, due to the fact that you do not need the added step of pouring. Note: I use food grade agar agar purchased from health food stores so the amount in the following recipes may need to be tweaked if using commercial grade agar agar. But a general rule is 20 grams of agar agar for 1 liter of water.
1. So my first question is with adding the ingredients... he says he mixes the dry ingredients and divides them up into the jars then adds water, mixes and PC’s... would there be any problem with adding all of the dry ingredients and the water into a pot and heating it all up enough to get everything thoroughly mixed before pouring it into the jars, and PCing?
I feel like I would get a more even product doing it that way but if there’s something I’m overlooking please let me know!
My next question is about the recipe itself...
Recipe 4 Cornmeal Agar:
5 grams (1 and 1/4 teaspoon) of corn meal (yellow or white)
4 grams (a heaping teaspoon) of agar agar
Optional: 1 gram of dextrose or 1/8 teaspoon of honey or karo
2. So when adding the cornmeal is it important for it to be VERY finely powdered? I am assuming I’m adding the cornmeal to the mix itself and not making a tea with it right? If that’s the case it would make sense for it to be finely powdered like flour to avoid large clumps no?
3. it says the dextrose/honey/karo is optional... what are the advantages disadvantages to adding/leaving out one of these sources of sugar? Most agar recipes I see contain some sugar... would you recommend using some dextrose or honey or karo or leaving it out?
4. As far as I understand it... mycelium can be “trained” while on agar to prefer certain future subrates (so to speak). The reason I want to try this recipe is because for grain spawn I almost exclusively use popcorn and it makes sense to me to start it on something with corn in it... does this make sense to you? Am I getting the idea or am I way off base?
5. The spores I want to germinate on this agar are pretty old and have gotten quite cold. I’d love to add some activated charcoal to the recipe to help the spores germinate. I’ve read that activated charcoal can really help get old spores going... so how much activated charcoal would you add? I’m thinking just a pinch should be enough right?
Once I get everything sorted out I’ll be sure to make a new thread documenting my first agar attempts trying to get some old spores going and doing some transfers :)
Thanks a lot everyone!
Edited by ethnobotanist420, 23 November 2019 - 01:10 AM.