Mushroom Cultivation Automation: From Foraging to Fruiting

Mushrooms are a unique and often mysterious organism. They’re not quite plants and not quite animals. As a fungus, mushrooms represent a distinct evolutionary lineage. Fungi grow as a single-cell yeast form (used in beer, wine, and bread making) and multi-cellular, thread-like mycelia that often produce fruiting bodies (mushrooms) and sclerotia (e.g. truffles), and are responsible for the decomposition of the vast majority of dead plant matter. Understanding life cycle of mushroom fungi is a valuable skill if you wish to harness this knowledge for mushroom cultivation.

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Automated Hydroponic System Build

Hydroponic farming is a method of growing crops without soil, with the main benefits of environmental and nutrient control, water conservation, and reduction of labor. This technique relies on a number of technologies that the principles of automation can be applied in order to improve yield and consistency. In this article and accompanying video, I’ll show you how to built a hydroponic system with basic components and automate it using the open source software Mycodo running on a Raspberry Pi single board computer.

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Environmentally Controlled Apiary

Ascosphaera apis is a fungal pathogen of honey bees (Apis mellifera) that has been a significant contributor to Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD), a phenomenon that results in the death of a honey bee colony. CCD has been responsible for a significant decline in honey bee populations around the world, and has been attributed to a number of factors, including pesticide use, subpar farming practices, parasitic insects, and pathogen insults.

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Mushroom Cultivation Revisited

Update: A newer version of this project has been released. Read More >>

There have been many initiatives undertaken to maximize mushroom cultivation productivity, and although variations exist between species, manipulation of environmental conditions has demonstrated some of the most dramatic effects on yield. Temperature, humidity, and carbon dioxide concentration have been identified as some of the most crucial factors for promoting mycelial colonization, primordia formation, and growth of fruiting bodies, or mushrooms. Additionally, each stage of development requires specific conditions for optimal growth. As such, the more precise these conditions can be controlled, the greater the yields that are possible.

Read More “Mushroom Cultivation Revisited”

Mushroom Cultivation Automation

Update: A newer version of this project has been released. Read More >>

There have been many initiatives undertaken to maximize mushroom cultivation productivity, and although variations exist between species, manipulation of environmental conditions has demonstrated some of the most dramatic effects on yield. Temperature, humidity, and carbon dioxide concentration have been identified as some of the most crucial factors for promoting mycelial colonization, primordia formation, and fruiting body (mushroom) growth. Additionally, each stage of development requires specific conditions for optimal growth. As such, the more precise these conditions can be controlled, the greater the yields that are possible.

Read More “Mushroom Cultivation Automation”