How to Grow Edible Mushrooms


Mushrooms are healthy, gourmet food that can be grown with relative ease in your own home. With a few household materials, you can begin your mushroom growing venture in no time. Mushrooms propagate by spores instead of seeds; the spores often come in inoculated sawdust designed for home-growing. Varieties such as button, oyster, shitake and portabella mushrooms are favorites of home gardeners and fetch a high price at the market. Save time and money by growing edible mushrooms at home.

Step 1

Order sawdust inoculated with edible mushroom spores. This can be found online at fungi-interest websites.

Step 2

Place unwaxed cardboard in water and allow it to soak for at least one hour. The dimensions of each piece of cardboard should be two by three feet to provide adequate room for growth of the mushrooms.

Step 3

Peel the wet cardboard apart until the ribbed side is fully exposed.

Step 4

Coat the ribbed side of the cardboard in the inoculated sawdust. The cardboard is the substrate the mushrooms will start to grow on.

Step 5

Roll the piece of cardboard into a burrito shape with the sawdust coating inside. Hold the ends together with paper clips, staples or tape.

Step 6

Place the rolled cardboard in a cool, dark location. Different mushroom varieties require different growing temperatures, though most are not above 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Rolls can be placed in a shady area of your garden or in a dark corner of a greenhouse.

Step 7

Keep the area moist. Mist the cardboard daily to elevate the humidity and encourage the growth of spores.

Step 8

Let the mushrooms grow. Mushrooms can take anywhere from several weeks to several months to fully mature. Most are ready to be harvested when the cap has fully opened.

Things You'll Need

  • Water
  • Inoculated sawdust
  • Cardboard
  • Paper clips


  • Growing Mushrooms at Home
  • How To Grow Edible Mushrooms
  • Growing Mushrooms in the Garden
Keywords: grow mushrooms, edible mushrooms, homegrown mushrooms

About this Author

Kelsey Erin Shipman has worked as a travel writer, poet, journalist and award-winning photographer since 2004. She is a featured poet on NYC public radio, is the winner of the San Jacinto & Alethean Literary Societies' Poetry Award, and has authored three collections of poetry including "cold days," "bastante" and "short poems." She earned a B.A. in philosophy from Southwestern University.