* if anyone has a tsugae print or slant for trade let me know!
Appearence: Normally arising as an antler, this mushroom can be found both in antler or conk form. Mature fruit bodies (conks) kidney shaped, while antlers are normaly single stalked in the wild and more uneven (multiple branched) in culture.
There are many color varieties most being redish, and some being black, yellow or even bluish. Growing tissue is generally white soon hardening and changing to an amber, and soon after that a mature color depeanding on strain. The surface, especially of antlers is smooth, a varnished apearence and touch. Since spores generally land on the conk surface its shiny color doesnt last.
Habitat and distribution: Growing on hardwoods this mushroom is found through out the world.
Mycelial apearence and fragrance: normally the mycelium remains flat, white, growing longitudianally radial and very fast moving. With age metabolites and simple aging can cause yellow or orange discoloration among some species.
Medicinal properties: This mushroom contains a large group of polysaccharides with Beta Glucans, which have imune stimulating properties, being most abundant. It also contains cycotoxic compounds preventing the formation of tumors. Antiviral compounds have been isolated from this mushroom which are tested on a number of viruses including HIV.
Its also said to have an aphrodisiac effect, nothing i have personally noticed even thought ive been drinking reishi tea for the past year or so.
It may very well be a coincidence but i have not even had a cold since then. I must note, it has been prooven that the spores of this mushroom contain a higher cocentration of these medicinal compounds than the flesh itselfe.
Cultivation of this species following the steps that I personally follow:
Agar: i use a standard mixture for all my woodlovers.
15 grams malt extract
2 grams yeast
Water made from 5 grams of oats boiled in a liter of water for 10 minutes, strained and made into 1 liter.
This mixture is properly mixed and sterilised at 15 psi for 45 minutes.
The mycelium generally covers plates in 5-7 days. At room temperature (23 c)
Once done vedges of agar are transfered into sterile grain, i mainly use millet, its cheap and offers a lot more innoculation points than corn or wheat. Once grain master jars are done normally in a weeks time at room temperature, g2g transfers can be done which are followed by the innoculation of sawdust or directly to fruiting substrates.
I tend to use freshly shreded cotton wood and willow branches, suplemented with oat powder and hydrated lyme. An adition of coir and straw pellets provide the small particles needed for fast mycellial development.
This mixture is brought to field capacity and then filled into 5 liter jars. I have super pasturised these untill now but i will soon experiment, innoculating with sawdust spawn into the same mix. pasturised. This way i could reduce the amount of energie used for treating the fruiting substrate.
The sterile and cooled jars are then innoculated with grain, shaken very well and then laid aside to incubate. I must add that shaking these 5 liter jars packed with substrate is pretty damn hard... i will eventually need to switch to bags.
These jars take atleast a week but sometimes 2 weeks to colonise depeanding largely on the efficiancy of the shake. Once the jars are completly colonised i let them rest for atleast another, but more like 2 weeks before allowing them to start fruiting. The pictures below show the jars from my previous thread they have been fruiting for about 13 days now.
Fruiting stage: i will document this as we go along so in short for now: once the lids are removed and the jars are put into a light, humid enviroment primordia development soon start. This normally takes about 3-7 days, once these visible mounds have risen they slowly but unquestionably start to form antlers.
Once these developing antlers reach above the mouth of the jar, the formation of conks can begin. Its important at this stage that FAE is increased drastically, and once conk formation has started RH levels can be lowered to about 90-95% through out the different stages, standard room temps are maintained 23-24 c.
The development of conks but even the antlers is quite slow, it can be noticed on a day to day basis but it still takes about 1-2 months untill fruitbodies stop growing. Once this stage has been reached the entire growing chamber will be covered in spores, a thick dust like layer. Iam thinking of some method of collecting these spores as they have a very high concenrtation of medicinal compounds.
Harvesting these mushrooms can be quite hard sometimes. Probably a lot easier with bags , but with these bottles the mushrooms have to be ripped off which can take a lot of force. Once harvested the mushrooms can either be cut or dried whole. Note that its a lot easier to cut the fresh mushrooms than dried ones, but the whole fruit bodies are more esthetically pleasing.
Outdoor cultivation is also an option which i will discuss later on.
So this is the project iam working on right now, the plan is to cultivate as much as possible as fast as possible using the limited space available. I beleive that i can fit about 100 of those jars in there using up all the space, question is how much spores all of these mushrooms will release. Mushroom spores are a health hazard at such quantities.. ill have to get a face mask. I will be documenting as we go along, some spawn, and fruiting substrate preperation, the maturing of mushrooms and so on. So stay tuned :)
Thats it for now, ask away if you have questions. Ive tried to ad a few pictures hope they are the right size this time.
peace n luv
p.s. sorry about the spelling, i know its shit :)
Edited by Freaky, 13 February 2011 - 10:13 PM.