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Registered: 01/17/05
Posts: 67
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a newbie's first grow
    #3639089 - 01/17/05 03:11 PM (12 years, 10 months ago)

Hello everyone, I'm new to the scene, but ive been reading for a month or two and hope we can all help each other.

I'd like to tell you about my first grow, completed recently, and get some tips on cheap ways to get a better yeild next time.

My first grow went extremely well, for despite everything i did wrong there were two small flushes and no contamination. I had read all i could, but each tek is different, and all are slightly unclear, so i had to figure out how the whole process works, then make my own tek. I followed PF cake tek as closely as possible, as it seemed the simplest, small scale introductory route. Had two cakes made this time around and plan on doing 4-6 next time.

First of all, i got a syringe from a shop on shroomery sponsors list, and they proved to be reliable and good business. (just wish my CC bill didnt say quite so indiscretely what it was they sold). Second, off to find substrate material. vermiculite is no where to be found! online ive found resellers, but the smallest container is several gallons, and i wouldnt be needing that much, so i didnt want to pay the shipping charges involved. No local stores had it, although i should have asked them to order some. I ended up with some woodchip shreddings designed for growing orchids and the like. They appeared to have the air-pockets and water collection ability that vermiculite was going to be used for. Perlite was easy to obtain, and i got Brown Rye Flower at an organic food store. (stupidly i got confused between rye berries and brown rice flower and opted to go with the mixture of terms).

I mixed them in a clean bowl, the woodchips proving too large for an even mixture (0.75 to 2cm each), so i put some of the perlite in with as well. The mixture was wet, but not dripping. Filled two half pint drinking glasses three quarters of the way, with an inch of dry perlite on top, then a few sheets of aluminum foil covering the cake. With no access to a pressure cooker, i put them in a pot of boiling water, with a ball of foil underneath each to prevent them from sitting on the hot bottom and cracking. I put the lid on and waited 45 minutes.

They bounced around quite a bit due to the high water level and high air content of the cups, and they both cracked along the sides and base. one jar was flooded completely with the boiling water due to the size of the cracks. This jar was drained out a small hole in the lid for a few minutes.

The syringe was shaken and flame sterilized, and each jar was inoculated and covered with another peice of foil. They were then set in a 70F shoebox, and disturbed twice a day out of curiosity. colonization began after five days, and completed after nearly three weeks. Neither jar looked overly wet or dry, despite the flooding earlier.

My fruiting chamber was a two foot by three foot by two foot rubbermaid container with a hole cut in the lid and covered in plasticwrap for light. With an inch of perlite and an inch of water, and a space heater with an automatic temperature shutoff, the container stayed very humid and around 80F. It was fanned daily, as i read somewhere these things need oxygen. The cakes were white with brown spots where the woodchips showed through, and some areas were yellowing due to the wood bark's coloration. Pinning began shortly, but only five per cake. within a week there were ten fruitbodys between 2 inches and six inches in length with caps between 0.5 and 1.5 inches diameter. This was enough for three moderately-small active doses. The fruitbodys tasted like any mushrooms one would normally find in a salad or on a pizza, quite a pleasant unexpected surprise after having read about their horrible pungent taste.

I was dissapointed with the yeild, dunked the cakes overnight and prepared for a second flush. two weeks later there were about five fruitbodys of the same size as before. this produced one moderately-large active dose. three days more showed no new pins. By now the cakes had turned completely yellow, and were discarded.
I know i used the wrong materials, and things took way too long, but the flavor difference strikes me as odd. What do you think?

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Mushrooms, Mycology and Psychedelics >> Mushroom Cultivation

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