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More machine elfthan man...

Registered: 02/22/03
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Troubles with mold AFTER casing
    #3507562 - 12/16/04 07:22 AM (13 years, 5 months ago)

Well... this foaf has had great success in making spore syringes and creating any amount of spawn he wants, as well as running spawn runs to colonize substrate completely.

The problem he's now been facing (the last 4 or 5 attempts) is that once he has the straw all nicely colonized, he cases with pasteurized/sterilized (he's tried both) vermiculite, as he has in the past, successfully (but only once with great success).

Almost immediately after casing, white-grey cobweb looking mold appears (withing 2-3 days) and then within another day turns green/blue. He has had no luck in controlling these infections.

Things he's noticed, and asked me to mention:

1) The contamination appears to originate in the casing layer. Scraping off the contaminated casing layer shows what appears to be healthy mycelium underneath, with no signs of contamination. Obviously there are contaminated spores everywhere, though, so recasing or patching has always proved useless.

2) He's tried casings of various depths, ranging from 1/4" to 1" thick. Each has ended the same way.

Any suggestions on the cause (and possible cure) to this dilemma? It's rather disheartening to do all the colonization work with no problems every time, only to lose the whole thing at the end.

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Re: Troubles with mold AFTER casing [Re: ChiLong]
    #3507564 - 12/16/04 07:28 AM (13 years, 5 months ago)

IMHO, straw ALONE is about a 1 flush wonder & contam prone SOB, anyway.

Move on to horse poo, if ya have a source.

Far less contam prone, wil flush several times under optimal conditions.

IF YOU HAVE A PC, this is an easy blend of quasi/compost SYNTHETIC BULK SUBSTRATE.

Finely chopped ground aged /leached horse manure & presoaked finely chopped wheat straw, fortified with a small percentage of home ground BRF & some pre/soaked PC?ed WBS, as a delayed nutrient - source, with a little verm added -to increase its moisture retention capacity.

No exacting magic formula.
For instance, a 5 or 10 gallon size tote tub w/lid. Fill halfway with aged chopped (as fine as you can get it) horse manure. About a 20% portion of pre/soaked finely chopped wheat straw (the finer, the better). A couple pounds of home ground BRF. 3 or 4 quarts of pre/soaked PC?ed millet based WBS (PC?ed will not germinate). About a gallon size volume of vermiculite. Just toss it all in & mix well.

When you want to use it, take out however much you intend to use & add spring water until at field capacity (meaning - when you squeeze it - just a few drops of moisture - drip from it). Then PC the prepared mix (@ 15 psi 60 - 70 minutes) in a autoclave, turkey or tinfoil baking bag.

Allow to cool to room temp & spawn ASAP (sooner the better) @ about 15 to 20 % rate with colonized WBS.

Saran wrap top of container, poke some (10 or 15) pinholes in Saran wrap (for gas exchange), then cover container top with aluminum foil applied crumpled & loose over top & bent over edges a few inches (to keep it in darkness - but still allow some gas exchange).

That is a simple inexpensive bulk blend, that requires no science, or brain surgery to make. If you can find the ingredients (which isn?t tough, if you are tenacious & look for them). Think Feed & seed store for wheat straw & horse stables for horse poo.

Incubated & 80/85F & high rh, so it will not dehydrate. Once fully colonized, case with pasteurized or PC?ed 50/50 Verm - Coir mix , with sprinkle of finely crushed oyster shell (chicken grit - think feed store) to balance & maintain ph of casing mix.
PC'ed substrate mix is in a BAG & easy to protect.

WBS spawn is in 100% colonized quart jars, or autoclave filter/patch bag.

So - both are clean & good to go.

Use 12 quart / 11.4 liter STERILITE dishpan (or similar container).
($1.69 at Walmart)

Bake a few feet of rolled tinfoil in oven @ 350F - 10 - 15 minutes.

In as clean as possible surrounding conditions (cleaned Lysol?ed bathroom - G/B, or flow-hood).

Wear dust or surgical mask, cover hair, have clean hands, if using bathroom.

Spray tub with white VINIGAR
Then, spray with hydrogen peroxide (3% H202).
Wipe dry with sterile gauze pad.
This will KILL any contam on it.

Add sterilized tinfoil to tub BOTTOM & SIDES, if light shines through it.(so light doesn?t penetrate sides & bottom & cause bottom pinning - later).

Open Substrate bag & empty into lined container.

Open spawn jars - or bags & mix into substrate.

Pull out a couple feet Saran Wrap & spray with H202 (no need to wipe off).

Cover container TOP with Saran Wrap, H202 side down.

Pinhole Saran Wrap with alc swabbed needle.

Cover Saran Wrap with prepared & crumpled Tinfoil.

Bingo, you have a CLEAN & self contained substrate - ready to incubate.


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More machine elfthan man...

Registered: 02/22/03
Posts: 165
Loc: Twisted, moved to E-Ville
Last seen: 13 years, 30 days
Re: Troubles with mold AFTER casing [Re: agar]
    #3507672 - 12/16/04 08:42 AM (13 years, 5 months ago)

As I said, though... There's no problems initiating a spawn run at all, nor seeing it through to the end. The problem comes when casing, not before. Before casing, everything has been excellent.

As for straw being a one-flush wonder... my foaf's best results with straw gave him 3 huge flushes and no signs of contam ever.

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Re: Troubles with mold AFTER casing [Re: ChiLong]
    #3523749 - 12/20/04 11:23 AM (13 years, 5 months ago)

Sometimes it's hard to know from where the contamination is coming from.
You must remember that this time of the year has an increased contamination spores count. So it's always a good idea to bleach/clean your grow room and terrarium more often.


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