how to start mushroom farming | mushroom farming project report

People are growing mushrooms at home in high hills of Uttarakhand due to suitable whether. Oyster mushroom, Keedajadi mushrooms are some precious types of it. Oyster mushroom selling price is Rs 1400 per kg which is huge. Divya Rawat is known as mushroom lady and she is a brand ambassador of Uttarakhand in mushroom farming.

Today, I will draw your attention towards mushroom farming and care. Sustainable agriculture along with profit making farming has the power to stop Uttarakhand migration. I appreciate the effort done by mushroom lady Divya Rawat.

What to grow in hill farms and how to protect it from animals like monkey, goat etc. This is the biggest problem in Uttarakhand due to which the migration problem has started

So here is the solution - In my earlier posts for sustainable farming, I have suggested two cultivars that has power to stop the Uttarakhand migration problem 1. Kandali plant/stinging nettle cultivation 2.Hemp cultivation and now I am suggesting one more important crop cultivation and that is mushroom cultivation, because ultimately mushroom is the crop which can be grown in all seasons especially the climate of Uttarakhand suits it very much.

And the most important thing is it does not take much time to grow (45 days) and it can be grown at home as well so the problem to save the crop from animals ends here.  

What is Mushroom 

Mushroom is a fungus and needs the medium to grow, medium like straw, wooden dust etc. All these mediums including dry popular leaves can be used for the cultivation. Mushrooms are an edible fungus that can provide several nutrients. 

Oyster mushrooms (dhingri mushroom) are one of the easiest exotic mushrooms to grow and can produce a good profit in a small place. 

Oyster mushroom contains lovastatin a form of cholesterol lowering statin.

  • Different Types of Mushroom
  • Oyster Mushroom
  • Button Mushroom
  • Shiitake Mushrooms
  • Paddy Straw Mushrooms
  • Milky Mushroom

In the recent past, commercial mushroom cultivation is gaining importance as it is yielding good profits. The cultivation has started in many states of the country including Rajasthan, UP, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu Kashmir and now in Uttarakhand as well. From past two years Uttarakhand has participated actively in mushroom cultivation it is initial stage but the state is loving it. 

The credit goes to Divya rawat for encouraging mushroom cultivation in Uttarakhand she is also famous as mushroom lady. Divya belongs to Chamoli Garhwal region, Uttarakhand. Divya is brand ambassador of mushroom in Uttarakhand. No I don't know her personally, but if someone is doing so good for our nation or state then we should appreciate.

Anyways, we will discuss the methods of Oyster Mushroom cultivation and after that we will look at Q & A . Lets dive in.

Oyster Mushroom Cultivation in India

For easy growing mushrooms at home you need to complete at least four basic steps and after completing these steps you will find how to grow mushrooms indoor and in farm.

1. Chemical sterilization      2. Spawning     3. Mycelium Run      4. Fruiting Stage

I am sure if you will follow these four steps sincerely you can overcome all your doubts. 

1. Chemical sterilization 

There are many mediums like - wheat straw, wood dust, popular tree leaves etc.

You need water tank of 200 liters put hundred-liter water into it add 125 ml formalin, 10-12 gram Bavistin and mix it well. Add 10-15 kg wheat straw. Now press hard the wheat straw and mix all in water with putting good pressure on it (necessary). 

Now you need to cover the tanker from the top for at least sixteen to eighteen hours. Although insects like mosquitos and bees were finished by formalin perhaps there might be some small insects, to finish all these insects you need to cover it for this period, meanwhile, formalin releases a gas to finish all these insects.

After sixteen to eighteen hours, drain out the water and spread all the wheat straw for 24 hours. We need to spread the straw due to the moisture, this spreading process takes place to reduce the moisture of the straw from a hundred percent to fifty percent only.

Beyond this, most important reason to spread the wheat straw for twenty four hours is to completely finish or reduce the effect of formalin gas so that it could not harm the spawn. Formalin gas should remove completely from the wheat straw.

In winters four to five feet height (straw) is ok but in summers need to take care that you should not make a bunch of it and must have proper shade over the straw.

If we increase the height of the straw - first it will increase the temperature of straw and not allow it to reduce the moisture as well. one thing you need to note down is when you will touch the straw you must feel it cold, it should not remain hot at all.

While spreading the straw you need to take special care it should be done with very light hands no need to press it if you will press it then the air which is passing in between the straw will not pass.  

Step by step 

  •  Install water tank of 200 litre
  •   Add 100 litre water
  •  Add 125 ml formalin
  •   Add 10-12 gram Bavistin

Note - If you are using 1000 litre water then you need to calculate first to add formalin and bavistin in 1000 litre water i.e 125 ltr formalin x 10 = 1250 & in two thousand litre water 125 x 20 = 2500

Bavistin - It is a fungicide used to clear all the fungus from straw

Formalin - It is an insecticide used  to clear all the insects like mosquito, bee etc

2. How to grow oyster mushroom spawn

Before answering how to grow mushroom spawn you should know what is spawn. Seed of mushroom is known as spawn. Technically mushroom seeds are known as spawn. I should advice you whenever you reach market to purchase oyster mushrooms seeds you should ask shopkeeper to deliver spawn instead of using the term seeds of mushroom so that shopkeeper couldn't play on you by offering you low quality spawn. 

Before we connect spawning I must tell you the importance of spawn bags. You must have seen long cylinder type and very big size poly bags were used in European countries they use it due to extreme cold. But in India temperature varies a lot but still there is hardly any snow fall except high altitude area like Kashmir, we can hardly see any snow fall in Uttarakhand as well, apart from high altitude area like Oli, Badrinath. 

One should use Poly bags - 16 x 18 inches / to avoid the damage which can occur due to high temperature in India and if temperature decreases than it might take thirty days instead of fifteen days but damage can be avoided. Therefor one should use 16 by 18 polybags so that the temperature would not increase. 

Now lets get back to the spawning- Spawning are of two types 

1. Layer Spawning        2. Mix Spawning

Although one can use mix spawning to grow oyster mushroom, because in gold mushroom layer spawning is necessary and in oyster mushroom we can use both methods. However, I will explain both methods so that you can apply any of them. First we will learn the concept of layer spawning. 

Layer Spawning- As the name indicates one have to make layers in this method. First get a poly bag of 16 by 18 inches then cut both the ends from bottom it is necessary to cut bottom ends because incase there is any water remains in the straw then it can easily pass from these cuts. 

How to fill poly bag- In first layer add straw in second layer add spawn let me make it more clear to you. Just follow the below steps.

  1. 1
    Layer - Add Straw
  2. 2
    Layer - Add Spawn
  3. 3
    Layer - Add Straw
  4. 4
    Layer - Add Spawn
  5. 5
    Layer - Add Straw
  6. 6
    Layer - Add Spawn
  7. 7
    Layer - Add Straw

As you can see the formation of layers; you just need to practice the same don't change the sequence by yourself note first layer starts from the straw and ends with the straw. There are three layers of spawn and four layers of straw. 

After applying the layers tie the poly bag with rubber band. 

Note - Ten kg dry straw should contain one kg spawn.

Therefore in one quintal dry straw one will need ten kg spawn and thus in two quintal twenty kg spawn is needed. 

If you want to setup your own business you can start from a small room you need to start at least from three quintal dry straw.

Mix Spawning - It is as same as the process of making khichadi. Khichadi is Indian dish in which rice and lentils (daal) were mixed. 

Mix spawning is an easy process in comparison of layer spawning. In this method one can mix  twenty kg spawn with two quintal straw and fill it in poly bags 16by18  but this time no need to make layers. Remember they should be cut from both bottom edges as we did in the earlier process. This much is only needed in mix spawning and the rest process is same which I have already explained in layer spawning. 

A question strikes here that whether we perform layer spawning or mix spawning from where the air will pass. You might have seen in lots of you tube videos after putting fourteen to fifteen days they tear the bags.

I recommend don't do it because it is water wasting process. Mushroom cultivation is one of the cultivation that consumes less water in comparison of other cultivations. 

The process which I am going to tell you in which no need to tear the poly bag is just make holes over the bag but wholes should maintain distance with each other therefore make around thirteen to fourteen wholes on a single poly bag.

You must be thinking then when and how much to water the mushroom in this case wait until mushroom spreads out from the hole and when it grows bit then only spray some water on it. Water should be minimum as we use a spray to our body or when we go for hair cut barber use to spray our hair that much amount is more than enough.

The rest part of mushroom is packed in the poly bag and do not demands water as it already contains it the water in form of spray is only required for the spread portion of mushroom that comes out from the hole.

After giving water to mushrooms water should be evaporate other wise they may rot so one should give proper air to mushroom for two to three hours and for that you have to open the windows of the room. People often asked how to grow button mushrooms without a kit and if you are facing the same problem please comment below and I will try to cover this topic as well.

3. Mycelium Run - oyster mushroom growing temperature

In this process room will be closed for 14 - 15 days including all windows. Here we will look at the temperature which plays a vital role in mushroom cultivation. We will check both temperatures; room temperature and poly bag temperature in which we have filled the stuff (spawn-straw). 

  • Room Temperature- 20 to 25 degree
  • Polybag Temperature - 20 to 28 degree
  • You will find bag temperature will always higher than room temperature reason - fungus   are alive and growing actively. You need to purchase thermometers to measure the temperature of spawn bags. One can easily purchase thermometers starting from Rs 60 to 150 You should measure temperature at least eight to ten times in 24 hours. If one room is consist of 800 bags no need to check the temperature of all eight hundred bags. One can check randomly; a standard check is required.

One thing you might be wondering that why we have to shut the room completely even not a small window is allowed to remain open. It is because when mycelium grows then mushroom intakes carbon dioxide and releases oxygen, the more carbon dioxide presents in room fungus will grow more.

4. Fruiting Stage

brown mushroom

In this stage mushroom will intake oxygen and release carbon dioxide. While this you have to make some changes. Fresh air is required but don't use cooler and fan only you need to open the windows and let the fresh air comes in. It will decrease the temperature of room and mushroom.

The temperature should be 20- 23 degree Celsius for room and 20 - 25 degree for bags. There should be relative humidity in room means the air inside the room should contain moisture so that mushroom would not dry and it can take intake water too.

Imagine what will happen if carbon dioxide increases in the room will it effect the quality of mushroom I would say it will not effect the quality perhaps will change the presentation of the mushroom means sometime the umbrella turns upside down and sometime the stem of the mushroom will grow longer and shade will remain lesser, you might have seen these types in market. Sometime it causes a loss to sellers because they usually shorten the stem to present it in better way.  

To get rid of this problem installation of exhaust fan is necessary. Please pay attention while installing exhaust fans because usually you have seen exhaust on roof or might be somewhere middle (near by window) of the room but in this case scenario is totally opposite. 

Exhaust must be at the height of 4-5 inches from the floor. 

How to give air to mushrooms in correct way :

It can be divided in hours: Let me make it more easy -

Step by Step

1. In first hour open the windows to allow fresh air and open the exhaust fan too.

2. In secound hour open window only close the exhaust fan. 

3. In third hour close both window and exhaust.

4. In fourth hour open window for fresh air.

5. In fifth hour open window. 

6. Close both window and exhaust fan.

7. Fresh air required so open window again.

8. In eighth hour you should open both, window and exhaust.

You can slightly change it according to the room area and temperature.

So this complete process will take at least 45 days to grow mushroom. 

After 14-15  days time spent by mushrooms in room when you will start spraying water on 16th day you will find they are growing in bunches but not at the same time they will keep growing till 20-25 days

Note - You can use all the straw as fertilizer after performing mushroom cultivation. It can be used for milky mushrooms as fertilizer and tomato and other vegetables can easily grow in better and vital quantity. 

yellow oyster

Oyster mushroom cultivation FAQ

To start mushroom farming in India you should join mushroom farming training to understand the cost and profit in mushroom farming along with mushroom caring methods. You can follow mushroom cultivation training books as well and for enhance knowledge you need to follow the below steps carefully

1. Oyster mushroom cultivation in summer

Oyster mushroom is commonly known as "Dhingri" in India.
Oyster mushrooms are one of the easiest exotic mushrooms to grow and can produce a good profit in a small place. One can perform oyster mushroom cultivation with two methods 1. layer Spawning 2. Mix Spawning, you can choose any one of them. For oyster mushroom cultivation you need to follow few steps  1. Chemical Sterilization 2. Spawning 3. Mycelium Run 4. Fruiting.

All these four steps are deeply explained above. Mushroom will take around 45 days to grow completely. You need to take more care while growing mushroom in summers as it naturally grows in winters. You have to arrange a cold room if you are doing the cultivation in warm region. Mushroom cultivation demands more care so temperature plays a key role so think twice while starting this cultivation in summers specially in warm region.   

2. How many types of oyster mushroom are available

Different types of oyster mushrooms 

  • Pearl Oyster - Pleurotus ostreatus
  • Blue Oyster - Pleurotus ostreatus var columbinus
  • Golden Oyster - Pleurotus citrinopileatus
  • Pink Oyster - Pleurotus salmoneo stramineus
  • Phoenix Oyster - Pleurotus pulmonarius
  • King Oyster - Pleurotus eryngii

3. What do oyster mushroom taste like 

Pearl oyster mushrooms have slightly sweet and woodsy taste they are more light and soft or we can say more mild and tender than few other mushrooms.

Oyster mushroom contains lovastatin a form of cholesterol lowering statin.

4. How to identify oyster mushrooms 

  • They usually looks white to light slivery brown.
  • Oyster shaped cap, so it is called oyster mushroom. Usually 2-10 inches. 
  • Generally grow in a shelf like formation with overlapping cap.
  • There tops are completely smooth. 
  • oyster mushroom

    5. What is Pleurotus

    Pleurotus is a genus of gilled mushrooms which includes one of the most widely eaten mushrooms, P. ostreatus. Species of Pleurotus may be called oyster, abalone, or tree mushrooms, and are some of the most common mushrooms used for cultivation. Pleurotus fungi is being used in mycoremediation of pollutants such as petroleum and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons.


    6. How to cook oyster mushroom in olive oil

    • Trim the oyster mushrooms. 
    • Wash and cut the tip of the large, central stem that connects the oyster mushroom.
    • Heat the olive oil in pan then spread the mushrooms in single layer in the pan.
    • Cook them for 4-5 minutes until they start to brown. 
    • Stir the oyster mushrooms and sprinkle them with salt. 
    • Stir the mushrooms and cook for another 3-5 minutes until browned all over. 
    • Add butter, garlic and reduce the heat to low.  

    7. What are the easiest way to grow mushrooms

    Here are some easiest way to grow mushrooms 

    1. Mushroom growing kit.
    2. Mushroom Rafts.
    3. Grow in bags - indoor.
    4. Mushroom beds - outdoor.
    5. In the garden. 
    6. In the room.

    8. What is the easiest mushrooms to grow

    Oyster mushrooms are the easiest mushroom to grow. One can grow oyster mushroom on coffee grounds and even on toilet paper. To get oyster mushroom cultivation pdf you just need to comment in the box "yes I want oyster mushroom cultivation pdf" and you will get pdf in no time.

    While talking about oyster mushroom growing problems you need to take care of temperature, spraying water in initial days fertilizer arrangement, guidance is necessary in mushroom cultivation you need to check room temperature and mushroom temperature several times in a day. Good knowledge of chemical sterilization and mushroom spawn is necessary. Please go through the 3rd point of above section mycelium run where temperature required for growing oyster mushroom is discussed in detail.

    9. Can you grow oyster mushroom for profit

    Starting your own business growing oyster mushroom for profit is quite easy. It takes around 45 days to get ready for market. You need to follow only four steps - 1. Chemical Sterilization 2. Spawning 3. Mycelium Run 4. Fruiting. 

    10. How to start a mushroom farming business

    One can start mushroom farming business from very small space, you only need a small single room of 10 by 10 but first make sure of by checking these steps

    1. Choose a type of variety for mushroom farming.  (Oyster most easy and effective)
    2. Environment for mushroom farming.
    3. Get spawn for mushroom farming.
    4. Prepare substrate for mushroom cultivation.
    5. Bags, boxes, tray for mushroom farming.
    6. Fruiting in mushroom farming.
    7. Harvesting and storage.
    8. Fix the pricing and estimate. 
    9. Name your business.
    10. Register, license and permit.
    11. Where to sell mushrooms. 

    You need to have a good survey first and make sure to gain good knowledge of the above mentioned terms and then start your business. 

    Apart from mushroom one more sustainable crop called geranium is gaining popularity and farmers are eagerly comparing Mentha vs Geranium. Geranium plant farming is also becoming a profitable business and geranium farming profit is producing much more satisfactory results in the field of agriculture production it is also supportive in organic agriculture field. Also read about kafal fruit tree.

    Well explained video about oyster mushroom cultivation-

    by Mushroom Lady- Divya Rawat

    Mushrooms farming in Uttarakhand is becoming a trend and we need to give some credit to mushroom girl divya rawat as well. Earlier it was a mystery when people asked how to grow oyster mushroom in Uttarakhand but now day by day it is becoming a trend. Now take a look of button mushroom growing process. Before growing button mushroom you should be aware of the problems you might face while cultivation.

    Problems in button mushroom farming

    Remember button mushroom farming is not easy as oyster mushroom farming you have to take extra care and extra efforts to grow button mushrooms the biggest challenge in button mushroom is mortality rate of these mushrooms so extra care is needed in comparison of oyster mushroom where mortality rate is lower then button mushrooms.

    Mushroom training centre in Uttarakhand

    It is recommended to take mushroom farming training in Uttarakhand before starting the cultivation of mushroom. If you have decided to start mushroom farming in dehradun then you should be aware of mushroom market in dehradun that is near by vegetable mandi you should join mushroom training centre in Uttarakhand and the mushroom training centre is located in Dunda and Udalka in Uttarakhand. Divya rawat is not only the brand ambassador of mushroom but also provides the training of mushroom cultivation in chamoli garhwal and some time in dehradun as well.

    How to grow Button Mushroom 

    To grow any mushroom you need to perform first step by preparing compost and it should be done in open space. It is better to prepare compost yard on clean concrete floor. It should have such shape where water should not stand after composting put cover to protect from rain water. Natural and synthetic are the two types of compost that are used in button mushroom cultivation.

    Synthetic compost for mushroom farming - Calcium ammonium, ammonium sulphate and gypsum, bran, urea, wheat straw. Before blending all the ingredients like urea, bran, gypsum, calcium nitrate you need to cut the straw 8-20 cm in length then spread it on the composting yard and try to form a thin layer.

    Natural compost for mushroom cultivation - Ingredients required cow dung or horse dung, poultry manure, wheat straw and gypsum. You should chose one between cow dung or horse dung. animal dung should not be exposed to rain water specially horse dung. First mix the ingredients then spread on the composting yard. Later fill the composting in the trays.

    After this process spawning, casing, cropping, harvesting is done. In casing soil is made by mixing rotten cow dung. After 15-20 days of casing you can notice the tiny heads of the crop and small size button of white colour start developing within 5-6 days of this stage and later mushrooms are harvested when grown completely.

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