Monday, May 30, 2011

A weekend of Mushrooms with Paul Stammet (part 2)

A large Morrel.

Saturday and off to Fungi Perfecti about 25 km's West of Olympia. The course was a gruelling two days of info about how to grow mushrooms from tissue clones, spores derived directly from mushroom gills and also from mycelial cultures on agar medium. We also learned how to innoculate logs with plug spawn, make up pasteurized straw growing bags and make sterilized hard wood media to grow mushrooms in. The mushrooms we concentrated on were Oyster (Pleurotus ostreatus), Shitake (Lentinula edodes), Reishi (Ganoderma lucidum), Turkey tail (Trametes versicolor) and Lion's Mane/Yamabushitake (Hericium erinaceus). During the two days we were not allowed to take photos in the propagation lab where we did agar plate cultures since it was a highly sterile environment
Lab with the blue roof and lecture theater with the green roof.
Some of the class about to check out the growing rooms.
Paul Stammet and an attentive group.

Two of the growing rooms.
A large area used for preparing media to be sterilized
A barrel of rice straw being prepared for Oyster Mushroom inoculation.

The entrance to the can see the two ante rooms for changing into sterile gear. Also the very large autoclave that extends into the lab.
Lion's Mane


Pink Oyster grows in the warmer season.

Hen of the Woods.

White oyster.



Blue oyster likes to grow in the cooler season.

Pino Pino.
some agar culture plates I did

Having fun with mycelium cultures.

A straw bag full of embryonic Oyster mushrooms and a bag full of future Shitake on hardwood chips.

My spawn log of Shitake.

The Americans certainly do the Nationalism thing well. Next weekend is Memorial Day weekend.

In my rear view mirror in the ferry line up out of Port Angeles. This sort of view is yet another reason I'm happy to get back to Canada....

A Weekend of Mushrooms with Paul Stammet (part 1)

A lovely Lion's Mane (Hericium erinaceus) mushroom.

This weekend I went on my long awaited Growing Gourmet and Medicinal Mushrooms course at Fungi Perfecti in Washington State with Paul Stammets the author of many fungi texts and especially Mycelium Running. Paul is renowned as one of the World's leading Mycologists and has given TED lectures, supplies mycelial products to institutions all over the World and has one of the largest mushroom spawn libraries.

The empress Hotel in Victoria.

A seaplane following us as we left the harbour.

The James Bay houseboats with the Olympic Mountains in the background.

The Coho Ferry. 
I left on Thursday afternoon and spent the night in sleepy old Victoria and got up early the next day to catch the 10.45 Coho ferry to Port Angeles. The day was lovely and sunny, and ideal day for crossing the Straights of Juan de Fuca to the USA.
For some reason or other this couple decided to get married on board . It was all rather odd but sweet too.

A photosynth pic of the ferry seating.

The North view from Mnt Walker to Seattle and Mnt Rainier.

Looking East down towards Olympia.
The South view overlooking the Olympic Mountains.

From Port Angeles the trip is down the Olympic peninsula to Olympia the capital of washington State. The scenery is lovely with the road snaking through mountains and along heavily forested coastal Sounds/ inlets. I took a side road up to Mnt Walker which gives a lovely view of Mnt Rainier and Seattle on the North side and the snowy peaks of the Olympics on the South. Because the day was so nice I had the sunroof down and the music loud. Not a good situation for the first suntan of the year......arrived redfaced at the hotel that night.

That night I took a walk around the very quiet, old town part of Olympia. Nothing much goes on in this city. The shops only open at about 10am and close before 5pm. Night life is concentrated on 4th Avenue. I stayed at the Governor Hotel which is opposite the main central garden but I had a view over the Capitol Lake and the State buildings.

You can see the tall windows of the Urban Onion Restaurant at the far end of the city garden. 
The capital Dome overlooking Capitol Lake.

 Most evening I ate at the Urban onion which had some nice vegetarian fare and is in the converted grand ballroom of an old hotel with tall windows overlooking the central gardens.