Milky mushroom is gaining popularity among the edible mushrooms because of its white attractive robust sporo caps, highest protein content, long shelf life and taste. This variety of mushroom can be cultivated easily at home without much expenditure.
* Crop comes to harvest within 70 days.
* Can be cultivated on many agricultural wastes like straw (paddy, ragi, wheat) areca husk, sugarcane thrash etc.
* Contain highest protein (17.2%) and has 12 essential amino acids,
* Can be grown successfully in higher temperature ranges (32-38C).
* Can be grown as a substitute to oyster in and around Bangalore during summer months.
Milky mushroom can he grown on paddy straw similar to that of oyster mushroom. The cultivation procedure is as follows:
* Take fresh paddy straw, chop it into small pieces of 2-3 inches and rinse it in clean water for about 8-10 hrs
* Drain out water completely and boil the pieces of straw in a wide mouth container for about 30 minutes to kill harmful microbes. Then, drain out boiling water completely and remove the excess water if any by spreading it on a clean wire mesh in a dean room.
* Take polythene bag of 12″ x V$ or 14′ x 24′ size and make few holes at the bottom. Fill up the prepared paddy straw to a height of about 4′ inside the polythene bag and press it slightly.
* Half handful of milky spawn seeds are spread uniformly all along the periphery of the bag. Repeat this procedure of filling the bag for 4-5 times with paddy straw and seeds. At this stage, one can see the spawn seeds on the periphery of the bag. Straw filling should not be too tight or too loose.
* One bottle of spawn seeds is sufficient to raise 2 polythene bags containing paddy straw of 2.5 kg. each.
* Once spawning and bag filling is over, the bag is tied and labelled with date. Then the bags are shifted to spawn running room (semi dark clean room) where temperature is maintained at 32-38oC. The bags are kept under this condition for 18-20 days. During this time, the spawn seeds will start growing inside the polythene bag.[hidepost]
* After 18-20 days, open the bags and roll the extra portion of bag to the level of paddy straw. On top of this, put a layer of casing material to a depth of 3-4 cm. and spread it uniformly.
* Spray cold water once in two days on casing material till the crop attains harvesting stage,
* After 15-20 days of casing, pin heads appear on the casing material and these develop into regular size within 3-4 weeks after casing and ready for harvest.
* At the time of harvest, care should be taken to harvest without damaging the small pin heads which are growing. While harvesting, hold the mushroom between the thumb finger and index Finger, give a small twist to detach. After harvest, this gap should be filled up with pasteurized compost.
* The crop would come to maturity within 70-75 days. During the cropping period, if the temperature goes below 30OC the temperature should be increased to 35°C by using heater.
* From each bag, 1-1.5 kg mushrooms can be harvested.
The following casing materials can be used,
1. Fully decomposed Farm Yard Manure + Red earth + Sand in 2:1:1 proportion.
2. Fully decomposed Farm Yard Manure + Tank silt in 1:1 proportion.
The PH of this mixture should he 7-7.5. If there is a difference, the PH has to be adjusted by using lime powder or chalk powder. The casing material should be sterilised before use.
Note : 1. It is advisable to treat the cropping room with 2% Formalin solution as a disinfectant before placing the filled bag in the cropping room.
2. Cleanliness is one of the most important factors in getting good mushroom crop. [/hidepost]