GROWING MUSHROOMS IN OUTDOOR BEDS
Some mushrooms prefer to grow in an outdoor bed in your garden. These outdoor beds are usually made from either fresh woodchips or compost.
The main species grown on woodchip beds is Wine Caps (Stropharia rugoso-annulata) and the two main species grown on compost are button / field mushrooms (Agaricus species) or Shaggy ink cap mushrooms (Coprinus comatus).
The process is fairly simple. Firstly, you’ll need some spawn. Grain or sawdust spawn works well for these species.
Approximately 1kg to 2kg of spawn is required per 1m x 1m x 10cm deep patch of these mushrooms.
A bed can be prepared by digging a shallow hole (5-10cm deep) and filling it with fresh woodchips or fresh compost according to species. For wood loving mushrooms like wine caps, woodchip from non-coniferous trees works best.
This substrate layer should be 10-30cm deep. Where space is an issue, this same process can be done in the likes of a fish crate / plastic storage bin (black or opaque) with drain holes cut in the bottom. Or even a large flower pot will do the job as well.
Fill the patch with the substrate and thouroughly mix in the spawn.
After this, simply make sure that the patch is kept damp. Water it with the garden hose during dry spells. After a few months to a year, you should notice some good crops of mushrooms pop up when conditions are suitable!
To keep the mushrooms growing, top up the patch with fresh substrate each winter, to keep the fungus well fed for the next season.