If you're looking for a fun and easy gardening project, why not try growing mushrooms in…
Grow Lion’s Mane and Reishi with the best mushroom grow kit! If you’re a beginner, these two are the best medicinal or functional mushrooms to grow at home.
In recent years, only about 35 mushroom species have been cultivated commercially, either big-scale or small-scale. And now, there are already many different types of mushroom kits available on the market.
Though you’re not an expert mushroom cultivator, you can now grow different mushrooms including oysters, button mushrooms, shiitake, and enoki.
Some of these mushrooms are considered medicinal and some are purely grown for culinary use. Further, most medicinal mushrooms are considered wood-loving. Which means they prefer wood-based substrates.
Best Mushroom Grow Kit
The two most popular medicinal or functional mushrooms are the Lion’s Mane and Reishi. They are also the most favorite wild mushrooms to hunt by mushroom foragers.
The good thing is, you do not need to wait for the next mushroom season or go far places just to get your hands on these holy mushrooms.
With a good quality grow kit, you have everything you need to get started. Including instructions on how to set up your growing environment and how to care for your mushrooms.
Each of these kits comes with high-quality spores and substrate. With these kits, you’ll be able to successfully grow your own mushrooms at home.
Lions Mane and Reishi as Medicinal Mushrooms
Before we proceed with the growing instructions, let us get to know our two most popular wood-loving mushrooms.
The two most popular mushrooms often used in traditional Chinese medicine are Lion’s Mane and Reishi mushrooms. They are known to have a wide range of health benefits.
Lion’s Mane Mushroom (Hericium erinaceus)
Lion’s Mane is a large white mushroom that got its name for its mane-like appearance. Three species are found in Eastern North America and they fruit late summer and fall. As a hardwood mushroom, they grow on oak, maple, birch, and black walnut trees.
This mushroom is packed with nutrients and has been used medicinally for centuries. Specifically, it contains compounds like hericenones and erinacines that promote the Nerve Growth Factor (NGF), stimulating the growth of neurons.
Tastewise, it has a mild, slightly sweet flavor that makes it a great addition to any dish. It readily takes on the flavor of seasonings and has a unique rich umami flavor. Its texture is similar to lobster or crab. Meaty and delicate with a distinct muscle fiber texture.
Reishi Mushroom (Ganoderma lucidum or Ganoderma lingzhi)
Reishi, also known as the “queen of mushrooms,” has a fan-shaped cap and a shiny, varnish-coated appearance. Its color shades may range from yellow and orange to bright red and brown. Typically, it is a spring mushroom that grows on dead or dying hardwoods like hemlock, maple, oak, birch, and beech trees.
Reishi has a very long history in Chinese medicine to prevent and treat various human diseases. More recently, clinical studies show that the Reishi mushroom can fight cancer, boost immunity, improve mood, and much more.
Further, several reports have demonstrated that G. lucidum polysaccharides modulate immune system function both in vivo and in vitro.
How to Grow Lions Mane and Reishi Mushroom At Home | Using an All-In-One Grow Kit
To grow Lion’s mane and Reishi mushrooms, simply follow the instructions that come with your kit.
The process is fairly straightforward and does not require any special equipment or expertise. If you have manure-loving mushroom spores, the inoculation process is also the same as shown below.
Now, let’s get to the steps! Get ready and light the fuse! Once you get your grow bags and mushroom spores, you’re ready to inoculate.
Step 1: Sanitize with Isopropyl Alcohol
Firstly, find a clean environment. If you want to be extra careful, you can use hand gloves. With 70% or higher isopropyl alcohol, spray or wipe your hands and the entire grow bag.
Using alcohol ensures that no mold spores or other contaminants are present during inoculation. Also, using alcohol, clean anything that touches the grow bags.
Step 2: Inject 2mL Spore Syringe Content
Next, prepare your spore syringe. Remove the lid of the syringe and attach the capped needle. Then, briefly shake the syringe to disperse the spores equally.
We will use only 1 to 2 mL per grow bag. As much as possible, do NOT talk during the inoculation process. Since your saliva may introduce contamination. If you want, you may also wear a face mask.
- Do note that needles and syringes should be handled properly to prevent potential needle-stick injury, illness, or contamination. Follow these Safety Guidelines by the UCR Environmental Health and Safety to avoid injuries.
- Also check out What to Do If You Experience a Sharps (Needles and Syringes) Injury by the CDC
Wipe the injection port with an alcohol pad, and carefully uncap the spore syringe. At that time, inject 1-2 cc max directly into the injection port. You can squirt a little to the surface and the rest directly into the middle of the bag.
Squirting a little spore content at the surface of the grow bag is important, By doing this, you can later observe how the mycelium is colonizing the grow bag.
When re-using the spore syringe for another grow bag, wipe the needle with an alcohol pad. We are injecting the area with grains.
Step 3: Store Grow Bags in a Dark Area at 79°F
After inoculation, store the grow bags in a dark area at 79°F (26°C). The spores will germinate and will take around seven days to form visible mycelium in the grains.
Take note though that it can take as much as 30 days before you see visible mycelium at the surface. In some instances where conditions are not optimal, it will take two to three months.
If you’re the impatient kind, you can re-inject the grow bag if you do not see any mycelium growth within a week since inoculation.
In favorable circumstances, the grains in your grow bag (which is usually 50% of the grow bag surface) will turn white within two to four weeks. This means the grains are already fully colonized by the mycelium. At that point, you can already mix the bag.
Step 4: Introduce Fruiting Conditions
Once the content in your grow bag turns 100% white after mixing, it’s ready to fruit. To introduce fruiting conditions, cut the top of the bag and mist the sides with fine mist 2 to 3 times a day. Then, fold the top over and secure it with a paper clip.
In the first few days, you will see mushroom pins (promordium). These mushroom pins will mature into full-grown mushrooms (fruiting bodies of the fungi) within a week or two. You continue misting this till you get your first flush.
However, unlike other mushrooms, Lion’s Mane and Reishi tend to have an unusual look once they are about to fruit. Lion’s Mane mycelium and young fruiting body tend to have a cauliflower-like appearance. While the substrate of Reishi tends to look rusty and solidified.
Once you get your first flush of mushrooms, you can still save your fruiting block for more flushes! Yes, you can get up to two or three mushroom flushes in one grow bag. Follow instructions in the Member’s Area for the 2nd and 3rd flush.
Other Popular Wood-Loving Mushrooms
These two other wood-loving mushrooms are not only easy to grow. They are also some of the most popular and delicious varieties out there!
Turkey Tail Mushrooms
As the name suggests, turkey tail mushrooms resemble the tails of wild turkeys. They’re brown or black in color and have a chewy texture. Turkey tail mushrooms are often used in soups or teas. Also, they are believed to boost immunity.
One of the most popular mushrooms in the world, shiitake. This mushroom is dark brown or black with a distinctive umbrella-like shape. They have a hearty, earthy flavor that pairs well with meat or vegetables. Aside from being delicious, shiitake mushrooms are also high in vitamin D and offer numerous health benefits.
Summary | Growing Lion’s Mane and Reishi
With a little patience and care, you can successfully grow either of these mushrooms at home. Just follow these four steps:
- First, sanitize your hands and the grow bags with 70% isopropyl alcohol.
- Second, inject 2mL spore syringe content to the surface and the middle of the bag. Then, store grow bags in a dark area at 79°F, and wait for 7-14 days.
- Next, mix the bag when it’s 50% colonized. Then, store grow bags again for another 7-14 days. You can check your grow bags once or twice a week.
- Lastly, when it’s 100% white with mycelium, introduce fruiting conditions by fine-misting 2 to 3 times a day.
Next time you know, you already have mushroom flushes in the next 15 to 30 days!
With an All-In-One Mushroom grow kit, you already have everything you need to start growing your own Lion’s Mane and Reishi mushrooms! Happy mushroom growing!
Curative Mushrooms has to post the standard FDA Disclaimer…The statements made regarding medicinal mushrooms have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The efficacy of these products has not been confirmed by FDA-approved research. Curative Mushrooms is not making claims intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. All information presented here is not meant as a substitute for or alternative to information from healthcare practitioners. Please consult your healthcare professional about potential interactions or other possible complications before consuming the medicinal mushrooms. The Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act requires this notice.
This content is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of such advice or treatment from a personal physician. All readers/viewers of this content are advised to consult their doctors or qualified health professionals regarding specific health questions. Neither Curative Mushrooms nor the publisher of this content takes responsibility for possible health consequences of any person or persons reading or following the information in this educational content. All viewers of this content, especially those taking prescription or over-the-counter medications, should consult their physicians before beginning any nutrition, supplement or lifestyle program.