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Ok, this has got to be the absolute weirdest contam story I have ever heard of. My pet Raven was doing a grow with some spores he had purchased, and at first everything was going ok. He had innoculated some BRF and verm jars, put them in a rubbermaid-type container kept at around 80 degrees, and checked them periodically. At first, the mycelium grew rapidly, then after 3 weeks, stopped growing, with the greatest amount of colonization at only 15%. He had me ask about why they might have stopped growing, and folks told me to tell him to aerate the jars a bit more. So he did, and when we went to check on them this weekend, something strange was going on. He noticed that some of the mycelium had started to die back. He couldn't understand it. None of the jars showed any signs of contamination; he had boiled all of them hardcore for over an hour and was very anal about his procedures. Curious, he opened one and smelled. The scent was unmistakable: beer! Somehow, the substrate had fermented and was apparently killing the poor mycelium! He is absolutely shocked and frustrated, and wonders how this could've happened. Do any of you have some words of wisdom that I might pass along to my pet Raven, so his next grow won't be such a botch-job? He'd really appreciate it. Thanks!
-------------------- Walk in Beauty,
The Green Earth Shaman
"Whatever you take from Mother Earth, replace it, because nothing is for nothing."
-Native American Proverb
Air exchange is only needed after aprox. 80% of colonization, the "aerate" procedure was not need at all because at 15% mycelium benefits from Co2, an unfortunate advice. Also in what consisted this "aeration" ? Never mind, the contamination had probably settled when the mycelium stopped growing, such thing it's typical. From your description, i believe they were contaminated with bacteria or yeast due to a "weak" sterilization procedure, a PC would be an excellent idea but if you can't afford one, you may want to read about "fractional sterilization" in one of our FAQs.