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Nameko on Supplemented Hardwood sawdust


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#1 Cuboid

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Posted 16 May 2020 - 11:57 AM

Growing Nameko on Supplemented Hardwood sawdust.

I've been cooking substrate today. I have a couple of jars of Nameko grain spawn over due spawning to substrate. They were inoculated 15th March with liquid culture bought from a UK supplier. If anyone wants to know where exactly I can post over in the dedicated supplier discussion thread. The grain is 'pop corn' as usual (for me). They were ready a month ago really. I've not had the spare energy to spend on hobbies in recent weeks. I think they have produced some myco-piss as there is yellow staining; can anyone give an experienced opinion on the photo as I am not 100% sure it is not contamination of some sort? I'll use it anyway and see what happens. If it turns nasty in the substrate it can go outside.

 

2020-05-16 16.32.44.jpg 2020-05-16 16.32.57.jpg

 

Supplemented Sawdust Formula based on Stamets'

The substrate is hardwood sawdust supplemented with 20% wheat bran by dry weight and a final moisture content of around 60%. Stamets' recipe includes gypsum (calcium sulphate) but I don't have any and I do not believe it is necessary for my 'hobbyist' level of production - if I were attempting a commercial grow I'd be inclined to source all suggested ingredients and follow the procedures from Stamets' GGaMM to the letter. I have used this recipe excluding Gypsum previously, to grow Lion's Mane with reasonable success i.e. healthy long lived blocks.

The most economical source of hard wood chips/dust that I could find in the UK (taking into account I want a few kilos not a few tonnes) was "Briquette Heat Logs", probably known as something else in other regions of the world. Essentially they are quite course hardwood saw dust formed into approx. 3 1/2" diameter logs by heat and pressure - no glue added to hold it together. the courseness is good as if your saw dust is too fine it reduces aeration in the mixture. They are approx. £1 per kg here which is fine for my purposes. Each 'log' in the box I got is about 1.8kg and they are not too easy to break up so I just do a batch of substrate from one 'log'. They disintegrate quite quickly once you pour hot water on them but I don't want to store wet/damp HW saw dust. I could also saw them up to get specific weights but just can't be bothered - seems to much risk on the table saw and hand sawing hurts my sore joints.

 

Finding the weight of bran to add.

The Hardwood 'Log' Briquette was 1.85kg, this will represent 80% of the total dry weight, so divide by 80 then multiply by 20 gives the weight of bran needed.

(1.85/80) x 20 = 0.46kg of Wheat Bran

Back check calculation:

  1.85kg Hardwood 'Log' Briquette - (compressed HW sawdust)
+ 0.46kg Wheat Bran
  ------
= 2.31kg total dry weight
  ------

  (0.46/2.31) x 100% = 20% of total dry weight
(near as damn it anyway, I'm not weighing out to the nearest gram).

Calculating  water for 60% - 65% moisture content.

 

The total wet substrate will have 40% weight from dry ingredient and 60% from water.

So:

  (2.31 / 40) x 100 = Total wet weight = 5.775 kg

  Total Wet weight - Dry Ingredient Weight = Weight of water to add

  5.775
 -2.310
  -----
 =3.465
  -----
  
Round to 3.5L water (NB: 1L water weighs 1kg)

Back check calculation:

  2.31kg  <-- Total of dry ingredients
+ 3.50kg  <-- Rounded up amount of water
  ------
= 5.81kg Total wet weight (Nearly 13lbs for those who prefer non metric)
  ------
  (3.5/5.81)*100 = 60.24% moisture by weight.
  Rounding up the water volume made little difference and it is still in the 60% <-> 65% range.

This makes enough substrate for 3 of the filter patch bags I happen to have, leaving enough room for the spawn to be added and mixed in later after sterilisation. The bags are 25cm x 50cm x 6cm and the filter patch is about 3/4 the way up the bag. I find it rather easy to over fill them, about 4lbs is enough per each of these bags. Also this fill level helps them fit safely in my 21L pressure cooker.

I put the log in a large plastic bucket that can stand boiling water, boil the 3.5L of water and pour it in. The log quickly absorbs the water and expands and starts breaking up. You could probably just leave it to it but I like to get hands on and help it along by breaking it up and mixing to get the water evenly distributed/absorbed by the wood. It was late evening so I left it over night to fully absorb the water then this morning added the Wheat bran and mixed thoroughly. I shared the substrate out between 3 filter patch bags. Only 2 fit in my PC at a time so it'll be 2 runs, annoyingly the second run is with a half load which seems inefficient but never mind. If I was more active in the hobby I'd probably have other bits and bobs I could add to the PC to make use of the space but I don't right now. Baring in mind my PC only does about 12.5 PSI I will run it for at least 2 hours for the full load and maybe 1.5hrs for the half load. It'll take time for the heat to penetrate to the centre of the full load, 2 bags is a tight fit. The bottom and sides of the bags are protected from direct contact with the PC body by 2 layers of cloth, the bags tops are folded over and will likely pull in tight on cool down but as a precaution for safety during the run I put a small diner plate on top of the bags to ensure they cannot open up and block the pressure vent or safety valves etc. I add about 2L of water to the PC and this comes up nearly 1/2 of height of the PC body due to the volume mainly being filled with substrate bags. Seems high but I do not want to risk running dry.

PC is allowed to cool down naturally - I don't like forcing fast cool down, I am not at all confident my cheap PC would survive repeatedly doing that.

Spawning tomorrow seems likely - I have home repair/DIY to do now and the PC/bags will take many hours to cool down any way.

 

I will try and keep posting methods and progress here.


Edited by Cuboid, 16 May 2020 - 12:00 PM.

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#2 Cuboid

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Posted 17 May 2020 - 09:55 AM

Spawning to Substrate

 

The 3 cooled bags of substrate and the 2 jars of grain spawn were liberally sprayed with 70% isopropyl alcohol and transferred in to a make shift still air box. I just the biggest clear plastic box I have to hand, cleaned out with Dettol (similar to Lysol) then placed upside down at edge of worktop, which also was wiped down with Dettol. I slide it forward to make a gap under front edge and spray IPA up in to it as well to help knock down any airborne crap that is hanging around in there. Leave it all to settle for 20mins then reach up inside ans start working. It's a PITA and reminds me why I should really get around to building a flow hood.

 

The grain in the jars was solid with mycelium, due to weeks of neglect. I used a large spoon to dig out and break it up. No off smells noticed, only healthy mycelium mell was coming off this, hopefully confirming the discoloured liquid was myco-pee and not any contamination. I tried to share the grain out evenly between the 3 bags. Very awkward working in the box. Once the grain was tipped in to the top of a bag I do up the top tightly with an elastic band. Once all 3 were 'sealed up' like this I remove the box and take away the jars / spoon / lids out the way. The bags were then rolled around and kneaded quite thoroughly to distribute the grain spawn throughout the substrate and I noticed the bottom of the bags were a bit wet so made sure to redistribute the wettest substrate  around the bag as well.

 

The 3 well mixed bags are in a cooler to maintain a moderate temperature, the building is not well insulated and temperature swings from maybe 10'C at night up to 25'C in the day depending on how sunny it is. I may stick a temp probe in there for a day or two just to check it is staying at/near something sensible.


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#3 Cuboid

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Posted 17 May 2020 - 10:32 AM

The Wet at the Bottom of the Bag.

Extra thoughts on this. It is not the first time I have had this 'issue' using this recipe/method for substrate. Overall the substrate seems to be on the dry side of what I'd usually call 'field capacity' but after a day or two sitting undisturbed there is slight pooling at the bottom of the bag. IIRC when my Lion's Mane bags were colonising I turned them upside down after a few days to 'help' redistribute the moisture. I am wondering if I should be soaking the sawdust for a lot longer than overnight before PC'ing and using it. I may experiment with an alternate way of hydrating a 'log' briquette by leaving it in excess water for a few days then draining well. Will need to weigh before and after to see what moisture content it ends up at.



#4 Cuboid

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Posted 20 May 2020 - 02:49 PM

Temperature got up to 30'C in the cool box. Seems rather high but I've no way to actively cool it at the moment. I'm not gonna remember to keep put cooling packs in there. The spawn seems to be recovering fast and mycelium spreading into the substrate.I'll try and get a picture up. Main concern at this point is the high temp may favour contamination.
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#5 Cuboid

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Posted 22 May 2020 - 01:57 PM

5 Days into Colonisation of Substrate

Finally got around to taking a picture of the bags. Temperature here has dropped a bit today so not currently too worried about it being too warm for them now. Looking good still IMHO.

 

nameko_bag1.jpg nameko_bag2.jpg nameko_bag3.jpg


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#6 Arathu

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Posted 22 May 2020 - 04:25 PM

When I have subs that look like that I'm pretty happy......nice!

 

A


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#7 Cuboid

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Posted 22 May 2020 - 04:43 PM

When I have subs that look like that I'm pretty happy......nice!

A

Thanks for the kind words. Having only a few grows behind me I'm still feeling like a nervous novice lol.

Kind regards,
Cuboid.

Edited by Cuboid, 22 May 2020 - 04:44 PM.

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#8 UnHeisenbug

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Posted 24 May 2020 - 06:08 AM

Keep us updated Cuboid! I have about the same work flow going.
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#9 Arathu

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Posted 24 May 2020 - 08:31 AM

That's a good point to remember too as fungi like to have the proper attention, at the proper times, and then basically be left alone to do their thing....

 

After so many years I'm still nosy, its actually deep curiosity and desire to have what we call/think is success, and overprotective of my experiments....

 

Which IMHO is a very healthy attitude to have towards any work or endeavor.....I'm pretty passionate about fungi....

 

Do keep us posted on the progress. I'm like a little kid every time one of my subs pins up.... :biggrin:

 

Good vibes!

 

A


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#10 Cuboid

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Posted 30 May 2020 - 08:09 AM

7 Days into Colonisation of Substrate

2020-05-24_All3Bags.jpg

 

13 Days into Colonisation of Substrate

2020-05-30_All3Bags.jpg

^^^ Same view as the 5 day shot ^^^

 

2020-05-30_All3Bags_patch side.jpg

^^^ bags flipped to show other side ^^^

 

I'm a little concerned about the outer 2 not looking too keen on progressing further down the bag. No off smells or visible contam. Un colonised substrate looks maybe a little on the dry side but it's hard to judge. May be a gas exchange thing? I have seen advice elsewhere on Mycotopia recently that 0.5 micron filter patch bags should be used for this kind of size of substrate. Mine are 0.3 micron.
The middle bag happened to lose it's shape somewhat in the PC so ended up much looser than the other 2 - hence more air in and around the substrate. Could be a coincidence but could mean something.

 

[Edit: I can't count apparently... Corrected days since spawning.]


Edited by Cuboid, 30 May 2020 - 08:13 AM.

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#11 Arathu

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Posted 30 May 2020 - 06:09 PM

I've mixed bags up that have stalled on me and sometimes it works, but other times I find out it was infected with something.......

 

You're just two weeks in this run I wouldn't change anything at all yet. Let em run and see......

 

They look pretty good actually......

 

A


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