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Registered: 05/17/02
Posts: 33
Last seen: 21 years, 4 months
Casing Question?
    #672989 - 06/11/02 09:25 AM (21 years, 5 months ago)

what is the best the way to sterilize a 50/50 casing mix?

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Registered: 10/19/01
Posts: 1,056
Re: Casing Question? [Re: BabySpore]
    #672995 - 06/11/02 09:31 AM (21 years, 5 months ago)


Further investigation leads you to this:

Tips on sterilizing and pasturizing substrate:

There has been a lot of discussion on weather its better to sterilize the casing soil or not. In my friends studies.. he has found that sterilizing is better. Some ppl like to pasturize it. Thats ok to.. but he prefers to sterilize it. My friend buys filter patch bags from Fungi Perfecti ... these are large autoclavable bags (meaning they can go in the pressure canner and survive the heat without melting) with a filter on them for gas exchange... although for sterilizing the casing soil, the patch does not matter. Basically after mixing up all the dry ingrediants, (pulling out all the stix from the peat moss) for the 50/50 + mix... add in your water...mix real good....have your bag handy... squeeze out most of the water from the casing mix...so its just slightly dripping...then put it into the bag.. filled about 3/4 full. Put this in your pressure canner.. keeping it away from the sides... sometimes they will melt if touching the sides....and sterilize at 15 p.s.i for 45 minutes. Let this completly cool before using.... Now at this point.. the pressure cooker is going to take out some of the moisture.. just make sure when you go to use it as your casing soil... you squeeze out the water till its barely dripping.. and not running water. Here is another strange kicker.... my friend puts his bag outside...in the shade... with the top folded/rolled down.. with a plate on their to hold the bag shut ...so no bugs can fly in... and just lets it sit outside for a few days or weeks before using it. When you sterilize it.. your killing any eggs of larva or other unwanted bacteria in the vermiculite.. or mostly peat moss... and then.. well.. this is only his theory.. no scientific data to support this....but by putting it back outside... it regains some of the needed micro organisms' that the casing soil lost during sterilization. Now perhaps his theory is right.. or perhaps he's just been lucky...but he has seen a lot less trichoderma hit his casings since he started doing this. Another important note.. when the time comes to use the soil.. make sure the moisture content is right..if to moist.. squeeze the water out till its barely dripping.. if to dry.. then add in some bottled mountain spring water then sqeeuze it back out.
Another tip.. if you dont have the resources to buy the Fungi Perfect filter patch bags.. the plastic bags the peat moss and vermiculite come in work fine as well.. Just cut the rubber zipper seal off them so they dont melt... and use them the same as above.. just keeping them away from the edge of the cooker.
Additional update, use a layer of 50/50+ casing tek as the bottom layer instead of plain vermiculite, it works better. If you dont own a pressure canner/cooker .. then pasurize this mix. You pasturize by putting it inside.. say an old pillow case.. and put it on a boiling pot of water.. temp around 150f for 1 hour.

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Life magicapprentice
Registered: 03/19/02
Posts: 151
Loc: Europe.
Last seen: 20 years, 3 months
Re: Casing Question? [Re: BabySpore]
    #673060 - 06/11/02 10:14 AM (21 years, 5 months ago)

About the bags. You don't need to buy bags from any internet company. Just go to the nearest store and buy bags for keeping food in the freezer. The only thing you must pay attention to is the material it is made of. It must be made of HDPE (HighDensityPolyEthylene), not of simple PE.


"Five grams in silent darkness." T. McKenna
Why take more? Take different!

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