[Tastebridge] [Bio] pH discovery that explains why my Stipticus experiments are probably failing

miloh froggytoad at gmail.com
Wed Nov 9 06:36:50 UTC 2011

Is it me, or is 3 a hella low ph?

Good notekeeping!
On Nov 8, 2011 8:36 PM, "Roger H" <domitron at yahoo.com> wrote:

> I believe I have discovered my mistake in growing the Stipticus. The
> starting pH of a wood-decomposing substrate should be higher than the
> growth pH.  White-rot wood-rotting fungi such as Stipticus decrease pH
> through the release of oxalic acid.  The starting pH in the research paper
> I found online* suggests that the fungi is well accustomed to a starting
> wood pH of around 5.1, which a white-rot fungus takes to 3.9 (ideal is
> 3.5-3.8 in this species).  Thus by me starting the pH of the liquid culture
> at 3.8, the fungus probably cannot grow to release oxalic acid to lower the
> pH as it does in nature.  And my Burning Man 2007 bags DID start at a pH of
> about 5, actually by mistake according to my notes!  So, I think I have
> solved the problem of why nothing is working when I lower the pH to the
> optimal growth pH.  I will start a new liquid culture at a pH of 5.0 and
> bags accordingly and allow the fungus to lower the pH to the ideal growth
> level as it does in nature.
> Roger
> * See:
> http://les.bf.uni-lj.si/fileadmin/datoteke_asistentov/mhumar/clanki/2001_pHafterdecay_holz_als_roh.pdf
> PSS - A 4% dextrose/light malt liquid culture as I was using is around 5.3
> pH without anything added.  Under these conditions the mycelium was growing
> very well, which correlates with my hunch that I should not be dropping the
> pH to the optimal growth-stage pH but rather let the mycelium handle the
> drop.
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