does anyone grow or sell oyster mushrooms?

everettFL(8/ N. Fl.)February 10, 2005

I have been bolstered by my experience growing shiitakes last year and am branching out this year into oyster mushrooms. But I don't even see any in the stores! Does anyone grow oysters for their customers, and if so what do you sell them for per lb? My price on shiitakes is $8/lb, and am wondering about using that for oysters too. What kind of yield will I get from oysters? I'm doing the totem-style method on sweet gum wood. Any insight would be helpful.

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stan_gardener(cen ca)

hello everett. oysters have a natoriously short shelf life making them difficult for conventional marketing but great for direct marketing. i sell at farmers market 4-5 oz trays
for $2.00 ea or 3 for $5. i do ostreatus in winter & djamor
(pink) in summer-they attract alot of attention to the stand. oysters are typicaly produced comercialy on agricul-
ture "wastes"-straw,corn stalks,sugar cane,coffee grounds,
news paper,cardboard yada yada...yields can be amazing-100%
conversion is very possible. im getting about 75% on past-
urized wheat straw. i dont have logs & if i did i would not
"waste" them on oysters. while yields can be great and only
take 2 1/2 weeks oysters have a huge spore load & will att-
act fungus flies like crazy! read paul stamets info in grow-
ing gourmet & medicinal mushrooms.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2005 at 12:14AM
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everettFL(8/ N. Fl.)

This is sounding very interesting. I've grown an oyster kit in a bucket of coffee grounds before without much luck. I'm interested in using the oysters to grow on my larger gum logs that are too big for shiitakes... I've read 6-8 inches is a practical limit on shiitake logs when force-fruiting them regularly and my experience agrees. My woodlot is really thick with sweet gums that need thinning/ revitalizing, so I'm not concerned about wasting them right now. Actually, removing the larger-trunk trees will get the spindly saplings growing better for use as shiitake logs in a few years. Thanks for the reference again to that book... this time maybe I'll order a copy. I assume you get the spawn for the pink mushrooms from Fungi Perfecti?

    Bookmark   February 11, 2005 at 2:09PM
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stan_gardener(cen ca)

oysters are very amazing with bioremediation,tumor control,
adaptability to substrates,pasteurization instead of steril-
ization,speed of inoculation to harvest,possible yields per
sq. ft.and just the novelty of the darn activity. the spent
substrate is good animal fodder. i compost it with bags of
grounds from starbucks. i never got past the trial stage of
fruitng on grounds-i didnt like the smell or the mess. straw is cleaner and smells good. ive had no first hand ex-
periance with logs. i say try it but it will take awhile to
permeate a big log thus longer to fruiting. also the wood
may not be as nutricious as straw innoculated at 15-20%
grain spawn. i get ostreatus spawn on sawdust from fungi
perfecti,djmor spawn on grain from northwest mycological
consultants in oregon. ive also been happy with mushroom
people on the farm in tn. once i get a bag of spawn i trans-
fer it out a few times on grain. this way i have it on hand
and can afford to innoculate must read ggandmm.

    Bookmark   February 13, 2005 at 12:09AM
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everettFL(8/ N. Fl.)

Here's an idea: what if I use a chipper/shredder to grind up the branches and tops of the sweet gum saplings that I've used the main trunks for shiitakes, and then mix the gum chips with oyster spawn in a bin and fill growing bags with that medium, hang in the shade, and await fruiting in 4 months? I would love to see a good way to use the whole sapling instead of just 3-5 shiitake logs from the base. I've ordered my copy of Stamet's book and will see if this idea jives. Maybe I won't even have to pasteurize the wood chips if I chip them up freshly after cutting the tree?

    Bookmark   February 14, 2005 at 10:06AM
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daisy_dukers(Z3 MB)

Dont forget about wood pellet fuel, I get 40lb bags for 4.50 locally..

    Bookmark   February 14, 2005 at 9:18PM
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beth11(z7 southern MD)

Hi all,

Just getting back to this thread- after two years! I never did get started on growing shiitakes, a large pine tree fell on the spot I had picked out (at least there were no mushrooms there yet!) Combined with a broken chain saw. EverettFL how are your sugar gum logs holding up? I have tons of gum trees and a new chain saw!


    Bookmark   December 12, 2005 at 3:24PM
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Where do I get spore??
I have been looking for supplies, not kits.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2006 at 11:01AM
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stan_gardener(cen ca)

tom1953 youll want spawn (grain or sawdust permeated with mycilium) not spores. read my earlier post on this thread for some supplers :)

    Bookmark   January 10, 2006 at 5:20PM
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