Mushrooms deserve more attention than what they usually get. And portobello mushrooms more. They are rich and meaty, allowing you to use them to make delicious side dishes (or main servings for the vegetarians out there).
These mushrooms are incredibly versatile: you can use them as alternatives to meat patties (yes, they are that meaty), make gravy with them, or stuff them with parmesan cheese, mozzarella, and other veggies for a mouth-watering treat!
(By the way, soups also taste delicious!) And if that wasn’t enough, portobello mushrooms are also rich in fibers, vitamins, and essential minerals. And they have become more popular over the past few years.
But have you ever considered growing them in your yard? You might be surprised to learn that it isn’t as challenging as you think!
And you know the best part about growing food in your garden? It will taste nothing like the fruits and vegetables you purchase at the supermarket!
Not only that but growing your food will also save you some money. And with adequate effort, you’ll get satisfying results.
If you wonder how to grow portobello mushrooms, read on. Here, you’ll learn the best tips and tricks to grow these crops!
Our Tips on How to Grow Portobello Mushrooms
One of the best things about growing mushrooms is that they don’t need much light: if you don’t have a yard or a garden, don’t worry. You might get satisfying results growing them from the comfort of your home!
Because there are fungi, mushrooms do not grow from seeds like other species. Instead, you’ll need to get spores: tiny unicellular bodies that enable the growth and reproduction of the fungus.
But spores cannot make their food germinate: you’ll need to enrich their environment with sawdust, decaying plants, grains, water, and straw.
To save yourself some time and make things easier for you, we recommend purchasing a handy-dandy kit. The kits usually include spores mixed into their growing medium. You can find different types of them online.
To grow mushrooms using these kits, place them under optimal conditions, give them moisture, and wait. In a couple of weeks, you should start getting the first results.
If you are up for a challenge, you can also go DIY on this project.
However, things might get slightly more complicated under such circumstances. Jump to the next section to learn how to grow portobello mushrooms from spores.
Growing Portobello Mushrooms Indoors
You can grow these mushrooms outdoors or indoors: they don’t need much light, only moisture, and adequate temperatures. Growing them indoors might save some headaches, including the stress of keeping them under constant temperatures.
Follow the steps in this guide to avoid making mistakes.
1 – Create a Suitable Growing Tray
The first step when growing portobello mushrooms is to create a planting bed to allow you to keep the process under control. Make a frame using scrap wood or anything you might have on hand.
You can also build pre-made frames to save yourself some effort. But if you are making one yourself, make it at least 8 inches deep and 6 inches long.
2- Fill the Tray With Compost
Fill the tray with compost or manure. Be careful with the temperature: it should be about 50 to 70F. If you are from a cold region, you should consider growing your mushrooms indoors.
But beware: temperatures above 74F might prevent your portobello from growing and eventually kill the mushroom. The same will happen when the cold becomes too extreme.
3- Sprinkle the Spores
When planting portobello mushrooms, you should get your hands on spores. You can find them online or at some gardening stores.
Don’t forget to wear rubber gloves to handle them. Once your bed is ready, sprinkle your spores on the compost and gently push them down about one inch deep.
4- Maintain the Tray in A Dark Place
We suggest you place your tray in a dark place. Mushrooms don’t need much light to grow. But you’ll need to be patient: it might take a few weeks before you notice any changes in your compost.
After about two weeks (or more), you should see whiteheads emerging from the compost. It’s a mycelium film, meaning your mushrooms are starting to germinate.
5- After Mycelium Forms, Mist your Mushrooms Regularly
When you notice the formation of mycelium, it means you are on a good path to getting your mushrooms. Add some newspaper with peat on top to boost their growth. And don’t forget to regularly mist it with water: mushrooms like moisture, especially during the growing phase.
Add extra water from a spray bottle twice a day and wait for another couple of weeks. We told you, you have to be patient!
Growing Portobello Mushrooms Outdoors
Growing portobello mushrooms outdoors follows a similar principle as growing them inside. However, if you decide to set your trays outside, you must sterilize the compost before adding spores to it to prevent them from getting contaminated by bacteria.
Cover the compost with cardboard and black plastic to do so. Let them there for about two weeks to complete the process.
Then, follow the steps we outlined in the previous section.
Harvesting your Portobello Mushrooms
Under the ideal conditions, it might take about three to four weeks for your portobello mushrooms to grow. To harvest them, wear rubber gloves and gently dig out the mushrooms.
While you can enjoy them in any size, we suggest you wait until they are about 2 to 4 inches in diameter. Be cautious when harvesting your mushrooms: do not pick them until the edges are flat.
Once you take them from the soil, remove the earth using a damp paper towel and store your mushrooms in a brown paper bag in your fridge. You can get as many as two to three batches of mushrooms from a single trail. But the culture won’t go on forever: you will have to start over once the harvesting season ends.
If you purchase a kit, ensure you follow the instructions you find on the product. They usually also tell you how much to harvest before the tray runs out of nutrients.
How to Grow Portobello Mushrooms: The Bottom Line
And there you have it: growing portobello mushrooms shouldn’t be a mystery to you anymore! Follow our recommendations to get the most out of your spores and enjoy delicious meals with these crops!
Related Article: Do Mushrooms Grow in Swamps?