The process of growing Oyster mushrooms is pretty straightforward.
Having a room where you can monitor and control the environment to optimize the fresh air, temperature, and humidity is not bad. All of that is good but at times, growing your oyster mushrooms outdoor using the straw logs method looks better than anything else.
Why should you grow your mushroom outside?
Growing mushroom outdoor comes with ease and simplicity. You don't have a high expectation that won't be met in the long run. No regulation is attached to growing mushrooms outside compared to using controlled conditions.
Interestingly, they provide some fantastic results. Mushrooms love it outdoor; everything about indoor cultivation is just an advanced way of emulating the conditions mushrooms experience outdoor. This is much more pronounced with oyster mushrooms.
Oyster mushroom requires a lot of fresh air to produce everyday fruits. If they are starved of fresh air, they produce sickly fruits. To make more sense of this, you only need to see how mushrooms grow outside in the wild.
Mushrooms love to be out in the open, so they can release their spores with great dispersal potential. Their level of sensitivity to CO2 is high. They get to put effort into producing long stems to be distant from the tree and have access directly to air.
Getting adequate fresh air for growing mushrooms indoors to get large caps is often tricky. This is especially true when you attempt to maintain the correct humidity simultaneously.
There's a general misconception that mushrooms need a dark environment to thrive. As much as some species can grow without light, most species require light for average growth. When you grow mudrooms indoors, you will want to replicate the ambient light cycle outside. You wouldn't have to worry about that if you grew them outdoors.
Though it is best to have some form of shade (preferably, a tree) over your mushroom bed, they don't have direct contact with sunlight.
This is off the books, but your mushroom tends to produce thick and healthy fruits with lower temperatures overnight. The reason for that is still yet to be concluded, but growing mushrooms outdoor produces beautiful results.
There's a big difference between oyster mushrooms cultivated indoors and outdoors.
Bugs are something to worry about when growing oyster mushrooms outdoor. They are lovers of mushrooms. If they can gain access to the mushrooms, they will eat to their satisfaction before you can pick them. They can also convert it into a larva as they will just lay eggs in them. When you grow mushrooms outside, you need to be proactive and pick them out as soon as they are due for harvest.
When should you grow your mushroom?
Your location has a significant say on when to grow your oyster mushroom outdoors. Spring or a season where the ground can maintain high humidity levels is a great option.
If you live in a region with high temperatures, you should consider growing tropical species of oyster mushrooms outdoor. Yellow and pink oysters are good options as they thrive in warmer temperatures.
It takes about 2-4 weeks for the entire process, from spawning the log prepping to harvest. You should consider that when you want to pick the right time to grow your mushroom outdoor.
Prepping the log
It requires some work, but prepping a straw log is pretty straightforward. The first step is to clean, chop and pasteurize the straw. Next is to add your grain spawn put them into poly tubes with holes cut into the bag.
With ready-made grain spawn, this process becomes a lot easier. After prepping the log, you should give it time to colonize. It works better in a stable environment. 10-12 days is enough for the mycelium to work its way through the straw to produce visible pins.
Fruiting the log
Ensure that you position your log closer to the ground and protect it from direct sunlight and excess wind. You can also wet the grass close by to keep the area's humidity high.
It will take just a few days for accurate pins to appear with all the right conditions. Once the pins are visible, the growth from that point is rapid. The size can double within hours. Monitor your log well to harvest before they drop by themselves.
Don't allow the sores to drop before you harvest if you do that, the mushrooms will be past their prime. When the oyster caps begin to curl upward, it signals time for harvest.
It's best to harvest even before the caps begin to curl; the fruit at this stage is healthy and meatier. You will need a sharp knife for the harvest. Cut the entire cluster at the base and allow it to land in your container. As much as you can, avoid picking the mushroom individually.
Cooking and Preserving
You can hardly get fresh oyster mushrooms at a local supermarket for various reasons.
Oyster mushrooms are delicate and easily injured, so they don’t transport well. Unless you buy directly from a local grower, chances are you may never get to buy fresh oyster mushrooms.
Oyster mushrooms have a short shelf-life; they won't last long out in the wild after harvest. They are better eaten immediately after harvest. You can preserve them in the fridge for about 2-3 days if you allow them to dry out a little and keep them in a container where they are ventilated.
You can use an oven or a dryer to dry them for long-term storage. There are many ways to enjoy your oyster mushroom, depending on your preference.
After your first flush, you can still use your oyster log to produce multiple flushes. After the first harvest, let the log sit ad rest, preferably in a humid environment away from direct sunlight.
If you leave your log in fruiting conditions, it won't take long (within a week or two) for it to start producing mushrooms again.
When the log has completed its work, it will get contaminated. You can use it as compost once mushroom production stops.
Grow oyster outdoors
One of the more accessible and more relaxing ways to produce food at home is by growing oyster mushrooms outdoors. Nothing beats the excitement of seeing your mushroom increase by the day. Also, a sense of pride comes with producing your food by yourself from scratch.
All information in this article has not been evaluated by the FDA in any way. Don't be mistaken; our products are not made for diagnosis, preventing, or treating ill-health. Consult with a physician; you should not take the information above as a direct replacement for proper consultation. Also, don't self-medicate using the statements from this article.
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