Growing Oyster and Stropharia Mushrooms
in the Arnot Forest

The Arnot Teaching and Research Forest has hosted undergraduate summer interns since 2000. One of this summerís interns, Kevin Wolfe, will be conducting a mushroom cultivation experiment in collaboration with the Arnot Forest, Greene County Cooperative Extension, and our Learning Community. Kevin will be growing oyster and stropharia mushrooms on beds of mixed species woodchips. Check this website periodically for updates on the project.

Preparations for the project are already underway. The first step was to prepare the spawn for inoculating the beds. The stropharia will be purchased from a commercial supplier, but the oysters are being cultured from a specimen found growing in the wild at the Arnot last year (a local strain of Pleurotus ostreatus). John Boyle, the Learning Community's mushroom consultant began the process by culturing the wild mushroom.

With help from colleagues at the Kenneth Post Lab on the Cornell campus, the oyster mushroom culture was used to inoculate jars of rye grain in early April. The jars were then stored in a dark box at room temperature for 4 weeks and shaken every 2 to 3 days.

Myra McKenney, workstudy student involved with the Learning Community, shakes jars of rye grain spawn.

The rye grain spawn was used to inoculate milk jugs of sawdust and wheat germ in late April. The milk jugs will be stored at room temperature for three weeks, when their contents will be used to inoculate the woodchip beds at the Arnot.
Milk jugs containing mushroom inoculant

For more information on this project email Heather Bryant or Bob Beyfuss.

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