What are mushrooms?
Mushrooms are the fruit of a very complex organism. They are known for many useful products, including medicines and water treatment. Some mushrooms are very tasty, and some are toxic.
If you search the web for "mushroom life cycle", you'll find all sorts of information about this amazing transformation from tiny little spores to the things we call mushrooms.
It takes months for this cycle to complete, and will only be successful if dozens of variables all fall into place at the right times.
Unlike a regular plant, a mushroom doesn't grow from a seed. Instead, it grows like a butterfly. It starts out as a spore that must find a source of micronutrients to live off of.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spore These micronutrients are found in other plants and trees, so the spores must attach themselves to a tree root system to begin its life cycle. The spores germinate into mycelium. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mycelium Mycelium are a web of branching threads similar to a root system that transfer nutrients from and to the tree roots. Both the mushroom colony and the trees benefit from this relationship. When the mycelium colony have matured to a specific size and the environmental factors are just right, the colony will produce the actual mushroom. They don't last long at this stage, just long enough to open up and deposit some more spores.
My quest is to grow some Maitake mushrooms (Grifola frondosa) at home. I like the taste of these mushrooms, and they have been shown to boost immune cell and other anticancer activity.
I purchased a maitake mushroom home grow "kit" from fungi perfecti a few years ago The Maitake Mushroom Patch - Fungi.com and it was a complete failure. I learned a few things since then, and will attempt to get it right this time. Instead of starting from a kit, I'm starting from an actual mushroom purchased at the farmers market. I'm posting this in Vertical Farming because I found out that many countries grow mushrooms as a substitute for meat protein. Mushrooms as a Meat Alternative| American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) https://foodtolive.com/healthy-blog/mushrooms-best-alternatives-meat-vegetarians/
Follow along on this journey of discovery...…..