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Volume vs. Casing Surface vs. Yield
    #388666 - 09/08/01 01:58 PM (17 years, 5 months ago)

Quick question here for the more experienced:

When working with innoculation of bulk substrates, which has more effect on total yield - volume of substrate or casing surface, or neither?

Take for a super extreme example a box (plastic tub) that is several feet deep but only a couple feet wide and long - obviously the volume is quite high but the casing surface is relatively small.

Then say that that same amount of substrate was put instead into 3 or 4 containers, each with the same overall surface space (i.e. now the total surface area is 3-4 times as much) but a much shorter depth. Which would yield more?

I am assuming on a common sense basis that the setup with greater surface area would yield more - if that is in fact true, then what is to ever be gained by making your cropping substrate more than just a few inches thick and just getting a huge surface area?

All replies and relevant observations are welcome, thanks.

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Re: Volume vs. Casing Surface vs. Yield [Re: cantara]
    #388774 - 09/08/01 05:12 PM (17 years, 5 months ago)

well, i think this is a great question. i wish i knew the answer, but from my personal experiences i would agree with your hypothesis on surface area is a greater factor. when growing i notice you do get more flushes out of a deeper casing but sometimes this also means longer time for the casing to be out and it may get contamed or weaker flushes. i only case with about 1 1/2 to 2 in of substrate for each casing. please post any updates if your experimenting.

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Re: Volume vs. Casing Surface vs. Yield [Re: cantara]
    #388875 - 09/08/01 08:26 PM (17 years, 5 months ago)

its more like a combination of both... say, the more substrate you have, the more food the mycellium has for the production of mushrooms. but the thicker the casing layer is, the more it can support the fruit bodies...
at least to a certain point. after that, it just becomes not practical.

environment also plays an important part of it all.

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Re: Volume vs. Casing Surface vs. Yield [Re: cantara]
    #388899 - 09/08/01 09:06 PM (17 years, 5 months ago)

established successful tecniques ar successfull in part because they adhere to within parameters each species will do well in.

in the PF tek, sucess is best in quarter pint jars and half-pints to a lesser degree. I have used three-quarter pint jars that make a taller cake with lower surface to area ratio. few people report sucess with bigger cakes, though for example, a quart yogurt container could be used to make them.

it has to do with colonization time and the ability to dispose of waste products like CO2. the practical limit of dung feeders is a little over six inches of substrate, while up to twice that can be done, but with more difficulty. this of corse depends on how air-tight your substrate is. i have read in books that certain experiments have been done wherein the substrate depth was up to three feet deep, but in those cases, methods were imployed to ensure that CO2 got vented out. those experiments were to see if mycelium would transport nutrients a great distance to the mushroom, and the results were positive, it can. these same experiments did not track yeild versus surface to area ratio.

if the substrate is deeper than a certain point, it will become smothered in CO2. the remaining substrate may yeild mushrooms just fine, but there is a risk that the smothered area will be taken over by anerobic contams, then still energy will be lost by the remaining substrate as the mycelium tries to fight off the infection.

small cakes and thin layered tray cultures tend to play out early. i have no data on a ratio of total yeild to substrate ratio, but a high surface area with a casing on it will generaly produce higher production with less real-estate cost needed to store terrariums, once a person becomes adequate at growing, it is not so much of a problem to produce new colonized substrates to replace those that die.

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Mushrooms, Mycology and Psychedelics >> Mushroom Cultivation

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