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Author Topic: what should i use instead vermiculite  (Read 11653 times)

Marko69

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what should i use instead vermiculite
« on: September 21, 2004, 05:14:21 PM »

Is it possible growing shrooms without vermiculite. And if is, what should i use instead. Tnx
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Marko69

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what should i use instead vermiculite
« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2004, 05:16:16 AM »

Sorry, i was not looking at previous posts - Can I substitute any ingredients in the PF recipe?  Can I use some other kind of wool. Not organic ofcourse. There is lots of others industrial wools.
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IndiaShroomer

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what should i use instead vermiculite
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2004, 02:03:03 AM »

Nice question :blink:
I have never heard of anyone ever growing with any other water retentive medium other than vermiculite using PF-Tek.
The wool might work if it has properties that are similar to that of vermiculite.
You should give it a try and let us know.

I have experimented with using polymer crystals that absorb water, in most of my attempts I did not get any colonization at all. In some cases there was some germination, but complete colonization did not take place.

I am curious, dont you have access to vermiculite? It should be available at a gardening store near you.
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IndiaShroomer

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what should i use instead vermiculite
« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2004, 02:47:56 AM »

But actually, to answer your original question.

It is possible to grow without vermiculite, but you will have to use a method other than PF tek.

You might want to try modifications of the method, here is one that works for me. (for cubensis) Of course, this is all in sterile technique, so I wont get into that.

1. boil up a few cups of birdseed... at least for 1.5 hrs. Each seed should crack open, and expose the kernel, sort of like popcorn. Drain excess water, then rinse with cold water, each seed will have absorbed a substantial amount of water.

2. Load up your typical PF tech jar with drained/rinsed birdseed, only 2/3 way up to the top. (typically I sterilize the jars before use, thats the best practice, but swiping with alcohol will work as well). At this point you might want to look at the bottom of the jar, if it is showing a watery sludge then you still have too much water in the seed. You will want to drain it some more.

3. After putting on the lids (with 4 holes in them), cover the lid and mouth with a double layer of aluminium foil. You now need to sterilize these jars. You could either autoclave, pressure cook, or plain slow boil/steam them. depending on the method you use, you need to ensure sterilization. Typically if you use a presssure cooker, this is a good 60 mins after the pressure has been reached.

4. After the cooker/clave has cooled to room temperature (as much as 12 hours), the jars are ready for innoculation with your favourite strain of cubensis. (i prefer the PC orissa, native like I am:) During innoculation, follow sterile techniques (very important). Lift the foil at the location where you intend to innoculate and quickly innoculate all sites with a minimum of exposure (if you have a flowhood, no problems) !close the foil over the hole as soon as possible! Once all jars are ready place them in a clean (read sterile) shoe box (or something like that) and store for incubation.

The seeds have enough water in them to support a healthy mycelial growth by themselves. The colonized seed can be used as spawn for a plain dung or dung/straw bulk substrate. You could finally case with a mix of potting soil and coco-peat.

No need for the vermiculite.
But then again, vermiculite is god's gift to cubie growing... why would you want to do without?
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Marko69

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what should i use instead vermiculite
« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2004, 03:18:19 PM »

IndiaShroomer you are my man. :-) Tnx
Why I don`t use vermiculite. I tell you why. Because i live in stupi country named Croatia and I will tell you for sure that there is no vermiculite in the whole country.
But, I have collected different techniques how to grow shrooms without it and in next 5-10 days i will try them all and I will tell you the results. If I mess something, than I will buy vermiculite and new prints on Internet.
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