Despite the lingering snowdrifts, today felt like a good day to finally get our hands into the garden and establish a new bed of King Stropharia (aka Garden Giant or Wine Cap) mushrooms!
Anticipating a future full of softball-sized, grill-ready fungi, we set to work preparing the space. After constructing a box out of slabwood and locating it in a prominent spot in the garden, we established a base layer of cardboard.
Next came a roughly 2-inch deep layer of chipped alder and willow.
We spread the spawn over the entirety of the bed, allowing some big chunks of well-myceliated sawdust to remain, crumbling the rest into smaller particles.
These were covered with another 2-3 inches of willow chips, then the whole bed was given a good soaking with collected rainwater.
Finally, to protect the bed from wind-drying and the investigations of wilder critters, we added a final layer of cardboard and paper leaf bags.
If we’re lucky, the ’shrooms might begin to pop up as early as this autumn – we’ll keep you posted!