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Can mushrooms be bad? Mushroom Spore Slurry

Alan Stuart


Joined: Feb 24, 2012
Posts: 42
I have some mushrooms that just started popping up in my Southern California backyard. I want to do a Stamets Spore Slurry, like you can see here but no with morels. I was just wondering if anyone knows if there are any mushroom producing fungi that can be pests to plants? If there are are these them?
Right now there are no plants in the area (other then weeds volunteers) I am just working on improving the soil.

I took the photos with my cell phone which doesn't have the best camera. I attached them to this post.


[Thumbnail for 0228121330.jpg]

M.K. Dorje


Joined: Feb 23, 2011
Posts: 152
Location: Orgyen
    
    1
It would probably be very difficult to identify the mushrooms in the photo without more photos (especially close-up shots of the gills and stems, if there are any), as well as a spore print for spore color. The main group of "bad" mushrooms to look out for are members of the honey mushroom/ oak root fungus complex, which includes several different species of Armillaria. Some species of honey mushrooms are parasitic on fruit and nut trees, others attack conifers or oaks. Some species can actually spread through grassy areas with tentacle-like rhizomorphs that seek out over-watered and stressed-out trees with bad drainage problems. Honey mushroom mycelium can linger on for years in stumps, wood chips, logs or infected soil, and ruin new orchard plantings. They can cover vast areas and kill lots of trees. See if you can post more photos here and get a spore print so we can figure out what you've got. Honey mushrooms all have a white spore print. I recommend that all permaculturalists learn to recognize them before planting a new orchard or garden. Paul Stamets talks about honey mushroom prevention in Mycelium Running.
Josh T-Hansen


Joined: Jul 14, 2010
Posts: 143
Location: Zone 5 Brimfield, MA
    
    1
I have no idea what kind of shrooms those are, but I don't think its possible to do damage by spreading mycorrhizal fungi around. However, in "Mycelium Running:" Stamets did veggie trials with saprophytes and discoveredthat some increased plant growth while others (including oysters if I remember right) decreased vegetative growth. I wouldn't hesitate to spread oyster spores though, just if I was trying to maximize veggie production in the same area would run with stropharia.


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Alan Stuart


Joined: Feb 24, 2012
Posts: 42
i tried to attach this last time but they didn't show up (1 of 2).


Thanks for the info. I think I am going to try to spread this because it is in an area that has no immediate plans.


[Thumbnail for 0228121330a.jpg]

Alan Stuart


Joined: Feb 24, 2012
Posts: 42
(2 0f 2)

i was trying to get the spores but it is from my cell phone :/


[Thumbnail for 0228121331.jpg]

M.K. Dorje


Joined: Feb 23, 2011
Posts: 152
Location: Orgyen
    
    1
Those probably are not honey mushrooms. Are they growing directly from the wood chips? Or from soil? Do they turn blue when you bruise them? To be sure about identification , try getting a spore print. To obtain a spore print, take a mature mushroom, remove the stem and place the cap on a piece of paper (gills facing down), then place a glass over the mushroom cap. Wait a few days, then remove the glass and cap to check the color of the spores.
Alan Stuart


Joined: Feb 24, 2012
Posts: 42
M.K. Dorje wrote:Those probably are not honey mushrooms. Are they growing directly from the wood chips? Or from soil? Do they turn blue when you bruise them? To be sure about identification , try getting a spore print. To obtain a spore print, take a mature mushroom, remove the stem and place the cap on a piece of paper (gills facing down), then place a glass over the mushroom cap. Wait a few days, then remove the glass and cap to check the color of the spores.


They are all tried up right now and yes they are in a wood chip mulch. I don't think that they bruise blue but they are all dried up now so I couldn't say.
M.K. Dorje


Joined: Feb 23, 2011
Posts: 152
Location: Orgyen
    
    1
Next time they fruit, see if you can get a spore print from a fresh mushroom (and some more photos.) You might have something edible (or entheogenic) there.
Alan Stuart


Joined: Feb 24, 2012
Posts: 42
entheogenic eh? that'd be cool haha. It's not the first time they've popped up but next time they do I will for sure get a spore print
Franklin Stone


Joined: Jun 09, 2010
Posts: 152
Very difficult to tell from the photograph, but possibly a Pholiata species. Most Pholiata are not edible.

The Honey Mushroom has received a bad reputation that is probably not deserved. (It is, after all, edible.) Some experts believe that Honey Mushrooms are among the largest single organisms in existence, growing for thousands of years (or possibly much longer) to reach their current size, stretching across miles and miles. (Sounds a bit like that mycelial internet that Stamets has proposed.) Armillaria was here in North America long before the white men reached its shores.

Timber men hate anything that they perceive to affect the value of their lumber. They hate ALL mushrooms. (Just read their literature.) Often, they use "Armillaria Root Rot" as an excuse to harvest a stand of perfectly healthy trees.

Stamets sort of throws Armillaria under the bus in in Mycelium Running in an effort to rehabilitate the reputations of other fungi considered evil by the forestry industry. (Stamets used to work as a lumberjack, so he has some insight into that industry.)
Tannim Kyraxx


Joined: Dec 03, 2011
Posts: 24
Josh T-Hansen wrote:I have no idea what kind of shrooms those are, but I don't think its possible to do damage by spreading mycorrhizal fungi around. However, in "Mycelium Running:" Stamets did veggie trials with saprophytes and discoveredthat some increased plant growth while others (including oysters if I remember right) decreased vegetative growth. I wouldn't hesitate to spread oyster spores though, just if I was trying to maximize veggie production in the same area would run with stropharia.


I'm 99% sure it was the elm oysters that had the highest boost to yeilds
Tannim Kyraxx


Joined: Dec 03, 2011
Posts: 24
but really if you are going to the time and effort of making the slurry and encouraging fungi why not do it with a strain you know has edible/medicinal value?
John Saltveit
volunteer

Joined: May 09, 2010
Posts: 882
    
  25
Stamets actually said some positive things about honey mushrooms. They are edible, and in some forests, they change the soil from bare rock to thick, diverse soil by dropping trees. He promotes the use of other mushrooms to outcompete and stop parasitic mushrooms in cultivation of timber situations.

Yes, he mentioned the ones that helped are Hypsizygus Ulmaria, the Elm Oyster mushroom,, as well as King Stropharia, and Shaggy Manes. Tree oysters (PLeurotus Ostreatus) decreased yield, so grow them on wood instead of in the soil.

We need to clarify that these are not mycorrhizal mushrooms. They are cultivated culinary mushrooms. Most of the mycorrhizal mushrooms that you can eat benefit conifers, and are very difficult to cultivate on purpose, except by the method described in Rodale magazine, which is quite involved, but probably worth it.

JOhn S
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