Garden Giants, also known as Wine Caps, can be grown on fresh straw and/or non-aromatic wood chips/sawdust. The presence of the mycelium in the garden can improve crop yields, break down organic matter quickly, and reduce nematodes. This delicious mushroom has the shape and texture of a portabella with the flavor of a baked potato. A great addition in stir-fry dishes or on the grill. It is recommended that your mushroom bed is started in the spring or fall. For suggestions on how to use your kit please see our Garden Mushroom Kit Instructions.
Plant your garden mushroom kit in the garden anytime between March and October or after last frost date. Your 5 lb. bag of spawn can inoculate up to 20 sq. ft. For a quicker fruiting of mushrooms apply more spawn per sq. ft.
- Clear the site of vegetation, and mulch to reduce competition from other fungi. Choose a spot that will be a no till area. In between garden rows, around perennial plants, and around small fruit trees are good choices.
- Lay down one layer of cardboard. Then layer at least 2 inches of fresh hardwood woodchips, sawdust, and/or straw (i.e. substrate).
- Break the spawn apart and spread it evenly in a single layer. Cover with up to 4 inches of substrate. For faster colonization, add a second layer of substrate.
- Water regularly as you would vegetables in a garden bed. Pay special attention to moisture in the first few weeks as the mycelium establishes itself.
- Expect mushrooms to fruit after first heavy rains in the fall and spring. Harvest before the cap has expanded. Always cook your mushrooms.
Feeding the bed with additional substrate after the first year will prolong the life of the mushroom patch. When the mycelium is established, it can be used to inoculate new beds as previously described.