Sat. Jun 25th, 2022

Mushroom Farm: Edible mushrooms are fungi species with edible fleshy bodies. They are used in many culinary applications, medicinal or recreational purposes. Cultivated or harvested from the wild only a few are edible while others are highly toxic and poisonous. Full of nutrients value like carbohydrate, protein, fat, energy, vitamins.

Safety Concerns

There are a few safety concern on the consumption of some wild species. Therefore proper identification is important before consumption. Wrong recognition can result in serious fatality including death.  Both commercially cultivated, wild edibles can cause allergic reactions, rashes, diarrhea, throat itchiness.


Top Producers

Top ten producers are Canada, Australia, France, Belgium and Germany. Others are United States, China, Italy, Ireland, Indonesia, and Japan. More include the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, United Kingdom, South Africa.

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Top 10 Producers

  1. China
  2. Italy
  3. United States
  4. Netherlands
  5. Poland
  6. Spain
  7. France
  8. United kingdom
  9. Ireland
  10. Germany

List of Edible Mushrooms

Edible mushrooms are harvested from nature or commercially cultivated. Commercial cultivation is very profitable and popular in many countries. There is a huge market for them in Europe, China, United States of America and North Africa.


Common ones cultivated for culinary use are Shiitake ( Lentinula edodes), Button(Agaricus bisporus), Oyster(Pleurotus). Others are burgundy (Stropharia rugosoannulata), Snow fungus (Tremella fuciformis),enoki(Flammulina velutipes).

More include Jew’s ear (Auricularia auricular-judae), poplar/black poplar(Cyclocybe aegerita), pompom(Hericium erinaceus),beech(Hypsizygus tessellatus), Straw mushroom(Volvariella volvacea).

  • Shiitake ( Lentinula edodes)
  • Button (Agaricus bisporus)
  • Oyster (Pleurotus)
  • Burgundy (Stropharia rugosoannulata)
  • Snow fungus (Tremella fuciformis)
  • Enoki (Flammulina velutipes).
  • Jew’s ear (Auricularia auricular-judae)
  • poplar/black poplar (Cyclocybe aegerita)
  • pompom (Hericium erinaceus)
  • beech (Hypsizygus tessellatus)
  • Straw mushroom (Volvariella volvacea)
Common names Botanical names
Button Agaricus bisporus
Oyster Pleurotus
Shiitake Lentinula edodes
Straw mushroom Volvariella volvacea
Burgundy Stropharia rugosoannulata
beech Hypsizygus tessellatus
Enoki Flammulina velutipes

Harvest from Wild

Some mushrooms are difficult to grow so they are harvested from the wild. Most are seasonal, attract premium price, sold in local and international markets.

List of wild edibles are gypsy (Cortinarius caperatus), tooth fungus(Hericium erinaceus), Boletus(Boletus edulis), Blewit(Clitocybe nuda), Hedgehog(Hydnum repandum). Others are Yellow chanterelle (Cantharellus cibarius), Saffron milk cap (Lactarius deliciosus) andmaitake(Gyromitra esculenta).

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Wild Edibles

  • Gypsy (Cortinarius caperatus)
  • Tooth fungus (Hericium erinaceus)
  • Boletus (Boletus edulis)
  • Blewit (Clitocybe nuda)
  • Hedgehog (Hydnum repandum)
  • Yellow chanterelle (Cantharellus cibarius)
  • Saffron milk cap (Lactarius deliciosus)
  • Maitake (Gyromitra esculenta)
Common names Botanical names
Crab brittlegill Russula xerampelina  
Slippery Jack, Sticky bun Suillus luteus  
Common ink cap Coprinopsis atramentaria  
Birch bolete Leccinum scabrum  
Lawyer’s wig Coprinus comatus  
Dirty tricholoma Tricholoma terreum  
Hedgehog mushroom Hydnum repandum  

Steps to Grow Mushroom

First step is to select the spawn then choose the substrate. Prepare the substrate through pasteurization or sterilization. Buy the plastic bag, add substrate, incubation. Final step is growing, fruiting, harvesting.

  1. Select spawn
  2. Choose substrate
  3. Prepare substrate
  4. Pasteurization or sterilization
  5. Buy the plastic bag
  6. Add substrate
  7. Incubation
  8. Growing
  9. Fruiting
  10. Harvesting


Growing, fruiting is only possible with good substrate. The mycelium derive nutrients and energy from the raw material. Bulk material requires added nutrients, water, pasteurization or sterilization.

Once prepared add bits of mycelium in a process called inoculation. They are then mixed into the substrate and evenly spread for best results. Colonization through decomposition of organic material encourages rapid growth, fruiting.

Best substrate for oyster mushroom is hardwood, sawdust or straw. Straw substrate should be pasteurized, chopped and cleaned. Ideal for commercial farming you have a choice of wheat, oats, and barley.

Hardwood sawdust is derived from wood chips, fine sawdust or hardwood pellets.

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How to Make Substrate

To make the bulk material use a mixture of vermiculite, shells, ground coconut. Other methods involves the combination of soy hull, hardwood sawdust or use pasteurized straw. The fungi will grow on composted manure, spent mushroom substrate or coffee grounds.

List of Mushroom Farm Substrates

Good substrates are Soy Hulls, Straw, Coco Coir and Vermiculite. Others are Coffee Grounds, Agricultural Waste, Manure and Hardwood Sawdust.

  • Soy Hulls
  • Straw
  • Coco Coir
  • Vermiculite
  • Coffee Grounds
  • Agricultural Waste
  • Manure
  • Readymade substrate
  • Hardwood Sawdust
  • Spent mushroom substrate

Sterilization or Pasteurization

Perfect condition for medium is moist/partial shade, ideal for fugal growth or unwanted bacteria. Use pasteurization or sterilization to remove molds or bacteria.

Pasteurize by heating a bulk substrate 150-185 degree Fahrenheit for 2 hours. If you want to sterilize heat the substrate under pressure over 250 degrees Fahrenheit.

Adding Supplements

Supplementation is process used to add nutritious supplements to substrate. This process guarantees faster growth however contamination is a serious issue.

Urban Mushroom Farm Design

There are many materials practicable for large scape urban production. Big urban setup requires large space. Use two to three shipping containers or hydroponic tent design. Some commercial producers use insulated fridge panel room. Other materials are wooden stud frame with plastic sheeting.

How to Grow Oyster Mushrooms with Coffee Waste

Items Needed

Here are a few items you need to grow mushroom on coffee waste. You need fresh spent coffee grounds, high rate Oyster Mushroom spawn. Others are good filter patch grow bags, good hygiene to reduce contamination.

  1. Fresh spent coffee grounds
  2. High rate Oyster Mushroom spawn
  3. Good filter patch grow bags
  4. Good hygiene to reduce contamination

Growing Oyster Mushrooms in Coffee Waste

Oyster mushrooms are easy to grow in coffee waste once handled with care. Popular growing medium are shredded straw, hardwood, fresh logs. However using the natural process is moderately challenging with uncertain results.


Buy fresh coffee waste (spent coffee grounds) from local brewer. Order high quality oyster mushroom spawn and grow bags. Wash your hands to avoid contamination and mix spawn in fresh coffee grounds.

Mix them in a ratio of 1.25kg of coffee to 250g of oyster spawn. Spread evenly in bag cut few air holes close it tight. Another mix combo is 300g oyster mushroom spawn, 3kg fresh coffee grounds, 600g pasteurize straw. Place in dark area with temperature not exceeding 77F.


Once mushrooms appear place in humid area, fresh air, moderate light. It takes 2-3 weeks to grow harvest when edge of cap folds upwards.


Marketing considerations are creating value added food products, selling dried mushrooms. Others are sell to grocery stores, restaurants, farmers markets.

Mushroom farming in Nigeria

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By Femi

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