How to Grow Magic Mushrooms in a Jar

Magic mushroom growing has gained its popularity and something that many of us want to do as a hobby or for a living. Like in anything we do, determining how to start is the most challenging part. most especially if you are new in this interest or business. Figuring how to do it is hard in the beginning. There many different types of mushrooms that are edible that you can choose from.

Important Things to Consider When Growing Mushrooms in a Jar

Most mushrooms have their own specific growing needs and requirements. These needs and requirements are sometimes hard to duplicate indoors or at home. Luckily, magic mushrooms are not very sensitive or picky in their growing needs as compared to other mushroom types. There are supplies that are easy to find. Just make sure to follow a few simple steps and you can now grow your very own mushrooms at home.

First, you have to choose what kind of mushroom you want to start growing. There are three types of mushrooms that are identified as the easiest species to grow at home. You have the oyster mushroom, white button mushroom, and the Shiitake mushroom. These three types of mushrooms shared the same method for growing, they only differ with their ideal growing substrate.

For oyster mushrooms, they would grow best in straw or in coffee grounds. While Shiitake mushroom grows best on hardwood sawdust and the button mushrooms would grow best in a composted manure. Just by knowing these different substrates, this would also reflect the different nutritional requirements of each mushroom species.

However,  all these three mushrooms types are readily grown in sawdust or straw. You just have to make sure you use sawdust that came from untreated wood. You should grow the kind of mushroom you want to eat because you will grow something that you will eventually consume. It will also help in your sales talk if you want to venture into a mushroom business.

Things You Need to Prepare

Here are the important things you need and the simple steps you can follow to start growing mushrooms in jars. You will need a few pieces of equipment that are easy to find in grocery stores or garden stores.

  1. One dozen or 12 pieces of wide-mouth pint jars
  2. A spore syringe
  3. Brown rice flour
  4. Vermiculite and Perlite
  5. Pressure cooker or pan
  6. A spacious Rubbermaid tote


Mix together the vermiculite and rice flour (brown), and then pack this mixture into the pint jars. Top it off with more vermiculite. Punch holes into the lids of the jars and then tape them. The jars are then covered with aluminum foil. You need to pressure cook them for about 45 minutes to completely sterilize them.

Once the jars are cool enough, you have to inject these jars with a small amount of solution using the spore syringe. Place these jars in areas that are warm and the spores start to germinate into mycelium, the mushroom roots. Eventually, this mycelium will colonize the entire jar.

After the jars are completely colonized with the snow white mycelium, placed these jars in your fruiting chamber. Your fruiting chamber is made of large Rubbermaid tote that has a damp perlite at the bottom.  In about a week or two, you will start to see small mushrooms growing out from the cakes of colonized mycelium. As soon as the caps begin to open, you can already pick your mushrooms

1. Starting From Spore

Mushroom spores are similar to microscopic seeds. They gradually sprout into mycelium, these are the roots of a mushroom colony. The mushroom spores create a warm and damp place to sprout the mushrooms.

These spores are placed in a syringe, which is readily available to buy. In the syringe, you will see black chunks that are floating in the water. These are the spores that have clumped up together. Make sure to shake your syringe well to get rid of those clumps.

If you will not use your syringe right away it is recommended to refrigerate it. However, do not place it in the freezer because the syringe itself will be damaged when the water expands.

2. Prepare Your Jars

Your jars are required to be filled with a substrate. A substrate is a mixture of a highly packed nutrients brown rice flour and a vermiculite (water-holding). In your substrate, the magic mushroom spores begin to sprout, and then the mycelia grow all throughout, changing the mixture becoming a spongy block (white).

The holes that are punched into the lid of each jar should be big enough so the needle of the syringe can be inserted into it. To make the holes, punch the lids using a nail about 1/4 inch from the edge of the lid and punch 4 holes that are evenly spaced around the lid.

Before you start, pre-mix the substrate using a 2:1:1 formula by volume. The ratio is two parts vermiculite per one part brown rice, and one part water. For one dozen jars, you will need vermiculite (6 pints), brown rice flour (3 pints), and water (3 pints). Combine the substrate using a wooden spoon. These mixtures will be sterilized in the next step.

3. Sterilizing

Sterilizing the jars filled with the substrate is a very vital part of the mushroom growing process.

The substrate needs to be sterilized to kill any microorganisms that may thrive in it and this will reduce the possibility of contamination. That is the reason why this step is very important and you have to do this step very well.

There are two ways to sterilize the substrate. You can use a pressure cooker or a regular pan. Both methods will sterilize the substrate by steam.

Video By Jamie Oliver


4. Inoculation and Incubation

The second step is the inoculation of the substrate. This step requires you to work in a sterile and careful manner. Make sure you thoroughly clean the area before you inject the spores into the substrate filled jars. Use disinfecting gel on your hands or make an inoculation space or glove box, though this is not needed if you worked clean and sterile.

Final Thoughts

Make sure that you create an optimal cultivation temperature which is  24 degrees Celsius for your magic mushrooms and keep the cultivation bag humid for about 95 percent. There should be a sufficient amount of light but do not expose them direct sunlight. Growing your magic mushrooms in jars is possible with these steps followed accordingly.

Tired of growing your own? Try a hassle-free purchase of dried shrooms and other mushroom products at ShroomsDirect!