Plan the perfect garden with our interactive tool →

How to Collect Portobello Spores

...
Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images

Tip

Covering the mushroom keeps the microscopic spores in place.

Portobello mushrooms are simply a maturer version of the familiar white button mushrooms you will find at the supermarket. Big, meaty and delicious, they have become a sought-after delicacy. Portobellos, like all mushrooms, reproduce using spores rather than seeds. If you are collecting spores to try and grow your own, keep the mushrooms and spores as sterile as possible. Spore prints are beautiful and can be used to create natural works of art as well.

Choose mushrooms that are still convex or domed on top. Mushrooms that are flat topped or concave may be too dry and over-ripe to produce spores. The underside of the top is filled with little ridges called gills, and these produce the spores. They should still appear moist; if they look dry, they will not emit spores.

Cut or pull off the stem and discard. Place the mushroom, gill-side down, on the paper. Cover with the glass bowl and leave for 12 to 24 hours.

Remove the bowl and mushroom carefully. The mushroom will leave behind an intricately patterned spore print. If you are harvesting for cultivation, use a pipette to draw the spores up off the paper. If you are creating an art print, spray lightly with a fixative, possibly building up a couple of layers to keep the spores secure.

Related Articles

How to Grow Porcini Mushrooms
How to Grow Porcini Mushrooms
How to Grow Portobello Mushrooms at Home
How to Grow Portobello Mushrooms at Home
How to Identify a Chaga Mushroom
How to Identify a Chaga Mushroom
How to Make Mushroom Spawn at Home
How to Make Mushroom Spawn at Home
How to Get Rid of Mushrooms in Potted Plants
How to Get Rid of Mushrooms in Potted Plants
How to Grow Crimini Mushrooms
How to Grow Crimini Mushrooms
Mushrooms
Mushrooms
How to Grow Mushrooms From Tissue Culture
How to Grow Mushrooms From Tissue Culture
Types of Mushrooms That Grow in People's Yards
Types of Mushrooms That Grow in People's Yards
How to Grow Mushrooms With Spent Barley
How to Grow Mushrooms With Spent Barley
Mushrooms That Grow in Bunches
Mushrooms That Grow in Bunches
Garden Guides
×