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Greetings, I could use advice.


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#1 CentralLimit

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Posted 02 December 2019 - 04:46 PM

Hi,

 

This is a first post.  Wish me luck.  

 

I am new to mycology, and I am getting into it to supply myself enough to microdose.  I've been reading of its benefits for a couple of years, and I'm reasonably sure it'll help me along out of a bad bout of depression.  After ten years, I am mostly out, but I could use some brightness and perspective, if that makes sense.  First, though, I need some shrooms. 

 

Anyway, I have a problem with yield, and I could use some advice if you've got some. 

 

  • 14 Sep 19, I inoculated 18 BRF jars I bought from what seems to be a decent vendor.  No issues with my work or the vendor's, and all is well.   I used spores from a reputable vendor, I think.  Golden Teacher and B+, nine jars each.  No contam or mold to be seen. 
  • The jars seemed to take a long time to colonize, although I may have had my incubator a little cool, around 78F.   They were on a heating blanket, and I checked temps twice a day, and pulled the data recorder about every three weeks.  Process looks good, albeit slow. 
  • 9 Nov 19 I finally birthed and dunked.  Four of the cakes near the side of the chamber caught some light and shrooms started to grow in the jars.  When I pulled the jars, the shrooms had some black debris, so I threw cakes and shrooms away.  Otherwise, the other cakes looked pretty colonized, but they were not solid white.  I just felt I needed to get them into the fruiting chamber before I lost them.
  • 10 Nov 19, cakes go into fruiting chamber.  I had bought a fruiting chamber kit from the BRF jar vendor.  Kit used a plastic bin with cover, lid, perlite, and a humidity generator fed by a fish tank pump.  Has a small LED light too.   I read countless times not to buy a kit, but, I accepted the fact that it would be sub optimum, as I just wanted to learn.   Anyway, kit said keep it at 76F and 90%+ RH.   I rolled the cakes in verm, and stood the cakes on small squares of tin foil.  At this point I had a temp/humidity controller, and I thought everything was good.  
  • The kit said to fan the cakes three or more times a day, and I, most of the time, managed three fans as well as misting misting.  I fanned generally at 4:30AM, 5:30PM, 8:00PMish.  Lost a rather big GT mushroom to rot b/c I did not know when to harvest it.  
  • 23 Nov 19, Got 13g of wet B+ shrooms, made a few dry capsules of 0.12g each.  After taking a few, my wife says she sees a difference in my mood.  Encouraging.  
  • Since then (today is 2 Dec 19), I have collected maybe 2g wet of shrooms.  Very small.   Admittedly, I don't have great FAE, and the next time I grow I am either going to make a SGFC or rig a small exhaust fan on the fruiting chamber to go on briefly every few hours.   The chamber is humid, I have a bit of standing water in the perlite, and I put a small amount of hydrogen peroxide in occasionally to control growth. 

 

Right now, I am about to give up on these jars.  I thought I might be getting too much humidity, so I cracked the lid to get some FAE.  I did that for about a week, and nothing happened.  Right now I have the lid on tighter and I am fanning and misting three times a day, which is about what my schedule allows.  

 

I have 18 fresh, uninoculated, BRF jars and 4-5 12ml syringes loaded with golden teacher.  I sure as hell am going to do something differently next time, but I am not really sure where I went wrong, besides the FAE.   If you guys have any thoughts, I would appreciate hearing them.  Thanks for your time.

 

Regards,

 

 



#2 TVCasualty

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Posted 02 December 2019 - 08:37 PM

Hi,
 
This is a first post.  Wish me luck.  
 
I am new to mycology, and I am getting into it to supply myself enough to microdose.  I've been reading of its benefits for a couple of years, and I'm reasonably sure it'll help me along out of a bad bout of depression.  After ten years, I am mostly out, but I could use some brightness and perspective, if that makes sense.  First, though, I need some shrooms. 

I'm happy to report that you're very close to having more mushrooms than you'll know what to do with. You're "loving them to death," classic cause of much frustration among those new to growing fungi.
 

 

Anyway, I have a problem with yield, and I could use some advice if you've got some.

  • 14 Sep 19, I inoculated 18 BRF jars I bought from what seems to be a decent vendor.  No issues with my work or the vendor's, and all is well.   I used spores from a reputable vendor, I think.  Golden Teacher and B+, nine jars each.  No contam or mold to be seen. 
  • The jars seemed to take a long time to colonize, although I may have had my incubator a little cool, around 78F.   They were on a heating blanket, and I checked temps twice a day, and pulled the data recorder about every three weeks.  Process looks good, albeit slow. 
  • 9 Nov 19 I finally birthed and dunked.  Four of the cakes near the side of the chamber caught some light and shrooms started to grow in the jars.  When I pulled the jars, the shrooms had some black debris, so I threw cakes and shrooms away.  Otherwise, the other cakes looked pretty colonized, but they were not solid white.  I just felt I needed to get them into the fruiting chamber before I lost them.

 

 

 

 

Inoculated on Sept. 14th and birthed Nov. 9th?

 

56 days is waaaaaay too long. I get my first flush with 1/2 pint BRF jars at around 33 days from inoculation (and that's when harvesting begins, not when I birth them).

 

That said, I use home-made spore syringes that are much more heavily loaded than vendor syringes, but even with vendor syringes it shouldn't take more than 40.

 

Ditch the heating blanket. It just dries out your jars, which slows and eventually stalls their growth. 78 degrees is fine, and IMO even a bit on the warm side. I like ~75-76 for incubating and fruiting since warmer temps encourage everything to grow faster, not just your mushrooms. There is no need to use different temperatures for incubating vs. fruiting with cubensis.

 

 

 

  • 10 Nov 19, cakes go into fruiting chamber.  I had bought a fruiting chamber kit from the BRF jar vendor.  Kit used a plastic bin with cover, lid, perlite, and a humidity generator fed by a fish tank pump.  Has a small LED light too.   I read countless times not to buy a kit, but, I accepted the fact that it would be sub optimum, as I just wanted to learn.   Anyway, kit said keep it at 76F and 90%+ RH.   I rolled the cakes in verm, and stood the cakes on small squares of tin foil.  At this point I had a temp/humidity controller, and I thought everything was good.

 

 

Ditch the aquarium pump. And perlite. And everything except the bin.

 

This also works for fruiting (indoors or outdoors when it's warm enough) if you just set the cakes in the bin without a tray or anything under them: https://mycotopia.ne...-wet-towel-tek/

 

Just prop one side up a little so the condensation gathers in one corner and collect it when you fan. Or set a piece of foam board insulation in it and set the cakes on that to keep them out of any standing water. Perlite is messy, and unnecessary.

 

Basically whomever told you that a kit was unnecessary was right. I suspect that they only contain what they contain because otherwise the 'fruiting kit' would just be a plastic bin. The reason why you're told to fan 3X a day even though it has an aquarium pump running in it is because the air pump doesn't actually work for this application.

 

When it comes to FAE (fresh air exchange), it's much better to err on the side of too much fresh air vs. not enough. You can always increase humidity as needed but stale air strongly encourages contamination.

 

 

 

 

  • The kit said to fan the cakes three or more times a day, and I, most of the time, managed three fans as well as misting misting.  I fanned generally at 4:30AM, 5:30PM, 8:00PMish.  Lost a rather big GT mushroom to rot b/c I did not know when to harvest it.  

 

 

What made you think it was rotting? I ask because it normally takes a heck of a long time for a mushroom to start decomposing on a cake that is not otherwise contaminated.

 

And in the future, harvest when the veil just starts to tear.

 

When it comes to harvest timing, err on the side of too-early since being a only few hours late can see you end up with a purple-black mess of lower-quality fungi (if the color of any caps has begun to lighten before you go to bed, pick them at that point or else they'll probably be all the way open and sporulating like crazy by the following morning). They're still edible at that point since the purple-black is their spores, not rot (in case that's what you were seeing on that GT you tossed).

 

You should also explore making liquid cultures. There are many good threads detailing the process, and it's very easy and saves you a lot of money on spores until you start making your own prints and filling your own syringes.

 

 

Have you seen the Magic for the Masses PDF? Find it here: https://mycotopia.ne...for-the-masses/

 

 

 

Your approach sounds a lot like mine when I began. My first fruiting chambers looked like particle accelerators and then my more "advanced" stuff ends up being a towel clamped to a bin. :blink:


Edited by TVCasualty, 02 December 2019 - 08:42 PM.

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#3 Tenderfoot

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Posted 02 December 2019 - 09:02 PM

Welcome home, CL, we are glad to have you here with us! 

 

Excellent advice from TVC, per usual.


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#4 CentralLimit

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Posted 03 December 2019 - 05:25 AM

TVC, thank you very much for helping me.  I need to reread your reply a few times, and then I can act on it.  I may (probably) come back to this thread for some Q&A.

 

I haven't got the quote thing figured out, but you asked two questions. 

 

  • I thought the shroom was rotten based on the blue/black coloration, but also the texture and form of the shroom was starting to degrade.   I may have made a mistake tossing it, but I know now I waited too long to harvest it. 
  • I have read and reread Magic for the Masses.  It's awesome, and honestly one of the reasons I registered on Mycotopia.  I figured if the site had that kind of vibe, it would be a force for good in my learning.

 

 

Tenderfoot, thank you for the welcome. 


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