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Author Topic: too much rain?  (Read 3974 times)

erasurehead

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too much rain?
« on: December 03, 2006, 12:29:45 PM »

Hi,

The Psilocybe azurescens outdoor cultivation tek recommends uncovering the patch in the fall.

A person I met at a bar was relating an experience to me, where he uncovered the patch late in september and shortly afterward there were heavy rains.  This person didn't have a casing layer, except for some dead leaves and about 1cm of additonal wood chips, but nothing that would keep the patch from getting soaked in heavy rain.

Before uncovering the patch, he said the patch looked very good, with lots of mycelium growth all over, colonizing the the cardboard etc. After the rains, much of the mycelium seemed to have disappeared, and a good portion of the wood chips turned dark brown showing no mycelium growth. Since it's been a wet fall, the chips are very wet, though not quite soaked, right down to the bottom of the patch, and there isn't really any thick ropy mycelium, just a white veil on lots of the chips.  No fruiting ever occured even after temps got down to 5C for over a month.

Can too much rain in the fall ruin a patch? Would it have been better for this person to have left the patch covered for the fall? Are the dark brown chips "ruined" and need to be removed? Does this patch need a casing layer? Can it be saved? Is it still possible for it to fruit this year?

I've also read that watering too much in the summer will encourage aggressive mycelium growth in the summer, but can abort fruiting in the fall. Could that the cause?

cheers and thanks for a great web site!

-e
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anno

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Re: too much rain?
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2006, 10:59:16 AM »

>After the rains, much of the mycelium seemed to have disappeared, and a good >portion of the wood chips turned dark brown showing no mycelium growth.

By this description, it sounds as if the chips weren't colonized through and through. The chips have to be completely white covered with mycelium, and building a thick firm  "mat" of chips bound together by the mycelium.

>Can too much rain in the fall ruin a patch?
I doubt it.

>Would it have been better for this person to have left the patch covered for the fall?
No, the patch needs to be uncovered in order to provide a surface where mushrooms can form in the fall.

>Are the dark brown chips "ruined" and need to be removed?
It sounds like those dark chips aren't colonized for some reason.

>Does this patch need a casing layer? Can it be saved?
The reasons for not being colonized can be many. Perhaps the time was too short for colonization? Perhaps the wood was already colonized with some other mycelium? Was enough spawn used ? Did  the person you  met at a bar water the patch enough?

>Is it still possible for it to fruit this year?

If the cjips aren't colonized enough, then I doubt it.

>I've also read that watering too much in the summer will encourage aggressive
>mycelium growth in the summer, but can abort fruiting in the fall. Could that the
cause?

No. Watering in the summer is needed, if the conditions are dry, in order for the mycelium to grow and colonize all the chips. Your description sounds more like the opposite. Can  the person you  met at a bar make a photo of the patch and of the chips in detail?
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erasurehead

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Re: too much rain?
« Reply #2 on: December 05, 2006, 03:15:10 PM »

Hi,

thanks for the reply!

>Can  the person you  met at a bar make a photo of the patch and of the chips in detail?

funny you mention that, because I coincidentally ran into him again! He had his laptop in his backpack and gave me some pics on my usb stick. How can I upload them or send them to you?

He also reports watering plenty in the summer: once a week to once a day when it was really hot and dry, but "watering plenty" is subjective, so who knows?

cheers & thanks heaps for admin'ing this great site!

-e
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anno

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Re: too much rain?
« Reply #3 on: December 06, 2006, 01:53:12 AM »

How can I upload them or send them to you?

* Go to www.imageshack.us
* On the right hand side you will see the "Browse" button. Click on "Browse" and go to the place where your image file is stored.
* Double click on your chosen file.
* check the "resize image?" and select  a resolution of 1024x768 or 800x600
* Click the "host it!" button.

Now your picture will be uploaded to the ImageShack servers.
To make it appear into your post here, choose the "Thumbnail for Forums (1)" and copy and paste the code (don't change any part of it!) into your post and when you post the topic, you will see the picture there.

That's all!
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erasurehead

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Re: too much rain?
« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2006, 07:48:59 AM »

Hi,

here are some pics he had. the first shows the patch being made, then next few show the patch just before being uncovered in September, the last ?? show the patch now:

setting up patch:




uncovering patch in september:




good mycelium growth, colonizing chips completely and creeping over cardboard:




covered w/ some chips and dead leaves, etc.:


patch beginning of December:










here especially are lots of wet chips w/o too much mycelium, just a thin white veil on some chips  :-(








here's a good clump of mycelium:


At least there's one big fruiting body... :-)

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anno

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Re: too much rain?
« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2006, 09:05:54 AM »

By the pictures it isn't colonized too well.
Also, by adding more and more uncolonized chips to the patch you are delaying fruiting. As long there is uncolonized chips, mycelium will continue to colonize, instead of fruit.

The goal is to prepare the patch, then let the mycelium completely  colonize the whole patch by the autumn, when the fruiting conditions are right.

I doubt you will see a fruiting this year.....I suggest to leave the patch as it is, and add some, but not much, fresh chips next spring. Then let the patch completely colonize without adding any new chips late in the season.
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erasurehead

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Re: too much rain?
« Reply #6 on: December 06, 2006, 12:04:22 PM »

Thanks for your reply and diagnosis.

I agree that it's not too well colonized, but don't you think it looked much better in September than in December, especially comparing the shot with the mycelium creeping up through the holes in the cardboard with the pure white chips below (must view in full size to see) with the later shot that I commented on as being too wet? Do those chips look too wet to you? It definitely seems like there's less mycelium on the chips that are really wet and less mycelium total compared w/ september.

btw, "more and more" chips aren't being added continuously, only some bigger beech bark chips along with leaf litter were scattered on top after uncovering in september and a little soil at the End of November. Was that unnecessary/unwise?

The patch wasn't prepared until mid May, so maybe that was just too late?

-e
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pboks

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« Reply #7 on: December 06, 2006, 02:53:08 PM »

From the images of the patch I can see that this guy erasurehead met invested sincere effort into this project, and, somehow, I sense that he has approached the entire subject with great maturity and a deep respect for the potential neurochemical and spiritual profundity attendant to it. I'm saddened that the fates left him unrewarded and without karmic desserts for his positive energy!

It is curious that things turned out as described. Speaking only from uneducated intuition, I would be compelled to agree that the addition of growth medium as insulation seems to have adjusted the 'priority' of the mycelium. However, the best way to reconcile this hypothesis with those observed in the wild (under which conditions the mycelium can be observed to engage in fruiting whether or not there still remains medium to colonize) is to distinguish between additional medium to be colonized above or on its periphery.

If there was also a certain recession of mycelial growth on individual chips as a consequence of theoretical 'stress' of a sudden and unseasonable overhead addition of favored medium, it may be that a seasonally unusual shift in mycelial growth priority opened sufficient doorway for competing fungal or bacterial pathogens to wedge their feet on in.
« Last Edit: December 06, 2006, 02:55:46 PM by pboks »
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erasurehead

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Re: too much rain?
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2006, 04:41:12 AM »

Hello Pboks,

thanks for the fats...I'll pass them along if I ever see this guy again...

Anno,

thanks again for your diagnosis...did you have any further comments regarding my last reply?

-e
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