Image credit: Sporeprints/Mushroom Mountain
We've been on a bit of a mushroom kick at TreeHugger lately. From using mycorrhizal fungi to replace fertilizers to mushrooms breaking down diapers in landfill, there are plenty of exciting ways to deploy mushrooms to help heal our ecosystems. But one of the most tried and tested has to be the compost heap. After all, fungi are nature's ultimate recyclers. Here's a neat little video showing one man's experiment's in seeding his heap with beneficial mushrooms.
Created by Mushroom Mountain—the same people who brought us footage of how to grow King Stropharia mushrooms, and how mushrooms can be used to clean up pollutants, kill pests, and recycle nutrients—this seems like an innovative way to help spread mushrooms through your garden.
Permaculturists and mushroom gardeners have long been encouraged to take stem butts—the hard, inedible ends with rhizomes still attached—from harvested mushrooms, and to place them in piles of sawdust or rolled up damp cardboard. (A video of this technique is also included below.) But the Mushroom Mountain guys are trying something a little different here. They're taking those butts from a blewitt—a species that apparently doesn't mind being frozen—and blending them up with water. The resulting slurry is then frozen, and allowed to slowly melt through the compost heap—creating a fungi-rich heap that will break down faster and more completely, and eventually spread blewitts throughout the garden once the compost is used.
There doesn't appear to be a follow up video posted on how this worked, but I'd be fascinated to know if anyone has tried this at home. I have yet to find a commercial supplier of blewitt spawn, so it seems anyone who is interested will need to use stem butts collected from the wild. (Being careful, of course, to ensure proper identification.)
More on Mushrooms and Mushroom Cultivation
How Mushrooms Clean Up Pollution, Kill Pests and Recycle Nutrients
Mushrooms Break Down Disposable Diapers in Two Months
How to Grow King Stropharia Mushrooms in the Garden
Paul Stamets on How Mushrooms Can Save the World
Could Mushrooms Remediate Japan's Nuclear Radiation?
Fungus Turns Ants into Zombies, Eats Their Brains