Hello, another newbie here. I ran into this site during a search on Google, I can't believe I haven't ran into it before with the thousands of searches I have done the last couple months trying to learn all I can about growing. When I read through a bunch of posts here, I thought wow, this looks like the kind of place I'd like to hang out in! I belong to other forums, but never make a comment. I usually find the answer by doing a search and didn't feel a need to make any comments, we will see if its different here for me, lol.
So here's my story...(is it OK? should I be putting this, like diary, in a different place??) I have just gotten into growing my own mushrooms, edibles... Shiitake, Oyster, King Oyster, Cremini and Button are the ones I have starting now in agar and LC's and have a handful of grain jars/bag/container looking about 30%! I'll be doing my 3rd run of new agar's in the morning (and I used food coloring on this batch, gonna be really cool!) along with 4 LC's, got too late to cook my grains after I already started the soak 24 hours ago, sure hope they will wait till morning :)
It all started when I meet a guy, who came thru a short stay here in the cool hippie/cob building community I am temporarily staying at (well, been here 2 years haha) he was into mushrooms and took me out mushroom hunting a few times and got a good bunch of Turkey Tail and hedgehogs! When he left he gave me a phone book covered in white mycelium and I finally got the little gray Oysters to pop out and I was hooked. I got 5 books from the library, started reading like crazy, staying up till 3-4:00 every night, my spiral notebook with 20+ tabs is nearly full and a month later I was buying my first mushrooms to take cuttings (can't remember the correct "term, lol) That was last month, April 10th. (2017)
I started with store mushrooms, Shiitake and Oyster, "cuttings" in Grain jars. Got alot of contams, haha got 2 of 3 good jars of shiitake and all the (0/3) Oysters contamed. (and they are supposed to be the "easy" ones!!) I took some spores from an Oyster and a Shiitake.
Next stage, 5/6 I purchased one syringe of King Oyster Liquid Culture. It was a beautiful, big, white & cloudy with myc and the price was the best I found after searching every single site. (I'm retired and don't have alot of extra cash for my new hobby!) I made me a SAB and started working with more sterile conditions (ya, getting serious now...hahaha) and did my first 13 agars using "cuttings" (ah,live culture?) of Shiitake, Cremini, my King syringe, some Phonebook Oyster myc. I also took some spawn out of the 2 good Shiitake grain jars. Got a handful of contams in the agars, several just doing nothing :( and mostly good ones)
5/9, was- transferring the 2 good grain jars(pints) to 1 Bag and 2 plastic containers (5" square by 3" high) They are all looking good so far! I spawned (correct?) 4 grain jars(pints) and 2 are looking good so far, 2 contamed. I also did 2 qts and 2 pt jars of grain and added my King Oyster LC syringe, not sure if they are growing myc or contams yet??? 1 LC small jar of King and 3 LC small jars of the the Shiitake and Oyster spores that I had wiped off the label marking when I wiped it down with Alcohol to put in the SAB!!! Hahahahaha, darn learning curve. All LC's showing no sign of life, still.
5/13 The agars I did (7 Kings) are doing pretty well, for such a beginner, I thought, lol...3 contams, 2 pretty good looking, & 2 really good looking (they will go to agar, an LC and a few grain jars tomorrow) along with 2 Agar dishes of Shiitake.
The spore agars, crimini agars and the phone book Oyster agar are still just sitting there, and a handful of contams on a few from that group too. Sure hope I can get the contam rate down, even though I live in a tiny place right now, with 3 cats, and too many other hobbies (cheese making and paper mache), now the supplies and "stuff" for this hobby! I made an indoor incubation green house- on top of a file cabinet, (I'm amazed I could squeeze that in here!) So its somewhat organized but quite cramped.Lots of places for dust to hide and carpet and running cats... well it is what it is and that won't stop me yet! I just try my darnedest to keep it as sterile, when working, as I can. This week I will be building a small greenhouse in my (yes temporary) yard to hopefully grow my shrooms in when they are ready to start fruiting! Well, please forgive me if this looong story should not have been here, its just kinda cool to have someone to tell my story to, I'm really excited about this hobby! If you read this whole story, then, thank you! lol...