Volume 13 Part 2 Article 50: Alternative Additives, Supplements, and Casing Amendments for Agaricus bisporus

Volume 13 Part 2 Article 50
Year 1991
Title: Alternative Additives, Supplements, and Casing Amendments for Agaricus bisporus
Author: D.L. Rinker


The effects of additives or supplements to compost and casing were studied. Compost for the commercial button mushroom, Agaricus bisporus, was prepared from straw-bedded horse manure, dried brewer’s grain, S-90 (a commercial additive) and gypsum. Various materials i.e. canola meal, paper mill sludge, hypnum peat, Stawet (a commercial hydrogel), and a gypsum by-product, were substituted for the non-horse manure component of the compost. Canola meal at twice the brewer’s grain rate increased yield significantly. The addition of biological paper mill sludge, hypnum peat, or gypsum waste by-product to the compost did not adversely affect mushroom yield. The Stawet material suppressed mushroom yield. At spawning, compost was supplemented with Nutricote (16-10-10; type 40), alfalfa meal, canola meal, Fast Break, Spawn Mate or myNutri. The best Nutricote rate was 2%, increasing yield by 18%. Alfalfa and canola meals did not significantly increase yield when applied at spawning. Comparison of Fast Break with Spawn Mate B-300 at 4 and 6% rate, respectively, showed no difference in production, although the Fast Break compost temperatures peaked sooner and averaged higher throughout the entire crop than Spawn Mate. The effects of Spawn Mate II SE (3%) and myNutri (1%) were additive and equal to 6% Spawn Mate alone. Addition of alfalfa, canola, and soya bean meals (7, 4, and 7% rates) to spawn-run compost at casing time increased mushroom production by 18, 19, and 29%, respectively. Commercial hydrogels (i.e. Hydreserve, M.G.A. Hydra-case, Terra-sorb, and Stawet) when added to sphagnum peat casing had no consistent effect on production.

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