How Mushrooms Clean Up Pollution, Kill Pests and Recycle Nutrients (Video)

king stropharia mushroom remediation photo
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Last week I posted a video on how to grow king stropharia, aka garden giant, mushrooms in your garden. They seemed like the perfect edible crop for shady spots in the yard. But it seems the king stropharia has other uses too—in fact the folks at Mushroom Mountain claim it could mop up and break down some of the unwanted coliforms from chicken poop and other animal waste. And that's just the beginning of how mushrooms can help heal the environment.

The video above from Mushroom Mountain—the same folks that brought us the video on how to grow king stropharia—explains how they used a patch of sawdust inoculated with king stropharia spawn to create a mycological filter. The mushroom creates a dense mat rhizomes that capture and break down run off and bacteria from the chicken droppings. And it looks like they create an edible crop in the process too.

But it doesn't end in the garden. Following up on the themes in Paul Stamets' TED presentation on how mushrooms can save the world, and his claims that mushrooms could help clean up radioactive pollution from Japan's nuclear crisis, the folks at Mushroom Mountain are also involved in research into mycological remediation and even mushroom-based pesticides. (See Stephen's post on ant-brain-eating mushrooms for more on that one!) And then of course there is the simple fact that mushrooms are nature's ultimate recyclers—taking biological waste and breaking it back down into valuable top soil.