[Tastebridge] Mushroom update

Roger H domitron at yahoo.com
Tue Oct 4 23:28:02 UTC 2011

Growing on coffee grounds will probably require some moisture balancing unless by some miracle the coffee grounds just happen to be between 60 to 65% moisture content (per weight).  One method could be actual drying/moistening of the grounds or mixing drier and wetter grounds together to achieve the required moisture content.  Alternatively if the moisture is slightly high, a modest amount of vermiculite could be added to soak up the excess moisture.  pH should also be considered.
Coffee grounds have a fairly high buffering capacity and happen to have an ideal pH for oyster growing, so we probably won't need additional calcium carbonate, although gypsum might still be useful to provide calcium without a significant pH impact.  And then there is the question of supplementation.  
Substrate supplementation is a yield optimization, never a strict requirement per se.  Substantial yield increases are not uncommon, although I simply don't know if supplementation would serve oyster my going through coffee grounds as well as it does hardwood sawdust/chips.  I would recommend a scientific approach applied, recording yield with varying amounts of Spawn Mate SE supplementation like we did before.  Given the impetus of growing on coffee grounds is largely to improve the sustainability of the operation while simultaneously reducing expense, it would be consistent with these higher ideals to minimize supplementation, even if higher levels result in modest yield increases.  The level that gives us the biggest bang for our buck, so to speak, can only be evaluated once adequate data is available on the efficacy with this particular substrate and grow environment against the level of supplementation.  Likewise, less
 expensive and less environmentally impacting bags, such as the compostable garbage bags I introduced, should be tried along beside the regular spawn bags because compostable food-grade garbage bags are nearly an order of magnitude less expensive and impact the environment less since they require less energy to manufacturer (in addition to composting rapidly).

From: Dan Willhite <willhite at gmail.com>
To: Tastebridge <tastebridge at lists.noisebridge.net>
Sent: Tuesday, October 4, 2011 3:25 PM
Subject: [Tastebridge] Mushroom update

For everyone at the mushroom meeting last night, I checked at my local Peet's coffee and they are very willing to give away used coffee grounds. The woman I talked to seemed to say they had as much as I wanted whenever I wanted. On the next sunny day, I'll swing by and try to get a couple of large trash bags full and dry them on my roof. Hopefully, we'll get a warm day before next Monday. 

Cheers --Danny 
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