Agriculture19 Comments

Mushroom farming is one of the farming that holds high prospect but has never gained ground in Nigeria so far. Whether you decide to grow your mushrooms in your garden (for private consumption) or in a big farm (for commercial use), it is important that you know some important steps to take when growing mushroom.

Few that are into mushroom farming are making serious money and the process of starting mushroom farm is quite simple. Another good thing about mushroom farming is that it is not capital intensive and the demand for edible mushrooms is quite high in the market. You can be making as high as two million every 3 months if you take up mushroom farming now in commercial quantity.

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SEE ALSO: How To Start Lucrative Onion Farming In Nigeria

A mushroom is a kind of fungi that grows on the soil or on the body of its food, usually decaying tree trunks. It is the fleshy part of the fruiting body of a fungus. Aside from the delicious taste of edible mushrooms, it also has numerous health benefits. The button mushroom can help in reducing weight, shiitakes are known to fight tumors, the chanterelle contains a reasonable amount of vitamins, while the oyster is currently being studied as a possible cure to HIV. All these are the health benefits of mushrooms and many more.

Before we discuss the various steps involved in growing your own mushrooms, here are a few facts about mushrooms you should know.

    • Mushrooms mostly grow in moist or damp places. In other words, it needs water to grow.
    • It must be grown where there is shade to protect it from wind and sun.
    • It also needs oxygen for survival.
    • Not all mushrooms are good for consumption. Some species of mushrooms are toxic, some are poisonous, while some are edible.

There are four categories of mushrooms. They are:-

Saprotrophic: These are the types of mushrooms that grow on decaying wood, plants and animals. Saprotrophs contain acids and enzymes that help to decompose or break down dead or decaying tissues for their absorption.

Examples of such type of mushrooms are Oysters, Shiitakes, Morels e.t.c

Mycorrhizal: This category of mushrooms are difficult to cultivate because of their nature. Mycorrhizal mushrooms have a kind of symbiotic relationship with the trees and plants they grow on. That is, the mushroom and its host derive mutual benefit from each other. This is so because, the mushroom weaves its mycelia into the root of the tree or plant, and by so doing, contributes extra moisture and nutrients to the tree, while getting sugars such as glucose from the plant in return.

Examples of Mycorrhizal mushrooms are Chanterelles, Porcini and so on.

Endophytic: What distinguishes the Endophytic mushroom from the Mycorrhizal is the fact that it is easier to cultivate. It can be grown in the absence of its host. The endophytic mushroom partners with its host, providing it with nutrients and resistance to pathogens.

Parasitic: The parasitic mushroom’s relationship with its host is one-sided. In that, the host suffers from infections of the mushroom until it dies.

The Honey fungus, Caterpillar and Lion’s mane are all good examples of parasitic mushrooms.

In growing your mushrooms, you must chose some of the best species according to the market demand and your environment. Here we present to you some of the most desirable edible mushrooms you can start your mushroom farming with.

Choose Edible Species For Mushroom Farming

Like I said earlier, not all mushrooms are edible. So, the first step in growing your own mushrooms, is to identify the species that are good for consumption.

Some varieties of edible mushrooms that you can choose from are listed below.

Chanterelles (Cantharellus Cibarius)

Chanterelles (Cantharellus Cibarius)

Chanterelles (Cantharellus Cibarius)

Rich in vitamin C, D and containing a high amount of potassium, the chanterelle is commonly grown in Asia, North America and the northern parts of Europe.

Shiitake (Letinula Edodes)

Shiitake (Letinula Edodes)

Shiitake (Letinula Edodes)

The shiitake is a variety of mushroom mostly grown in Asian countries, especially in Japan where its name originated from. It has been known to reduce tumors.

Morels (Morchella Esculenta)

Morels is composed of vitamin C and antioxidants, it protects the body from toxic materials and also protects the liver.

Oysters (Pleurotus Ostreatus)

Oysters (Pleurotus Ostreatus)

Oysters (Pleurotus Ostreatus)

Oysters are known to have anti-oxidant and anti-bacterial effects. It can also help in reducing the level of cholesterol in the body.
After you have chosen the species you want to grow, you can then go ahead to purchase its spawn. The spawn of the particular variety of mushroom you wish to grow is the material that carries the mycelium of the strain of the mushroom pending when it will be cultivated. It could be sawdust, grain or any substance that can hold the strain of mushroom until it is ready to be cultivated.

Decide On The Medium To Grow Your Mushroom

There are two mediums that you can use in growing your mushroom. You can grow your mushroom on sawdust or straw, or you can cultivate it on a log wood.

If you are growing your mushrooms on saw dust, you must do the following:

Step 1: Ensure that the sawdust or straw is free from micro-organisms or anything that may disturb the growth of the mushrooms.

Step 2: Spread your medium into a container that can provide enough room for proper growth of the mushrooms.

Step 3: Mix the mushroom spawn with the medium inside the container.

Step 4: The mushroom spawn needs a certain amount of heat to enable its roots settle in the medium. Therefore, you must heat the container with the mushroom spawn and the medium or place it in direct sunlight for a while.

Step 5: After heating the medium and the spawn, the next thing to do is to put the mixture in a dark room. It could be a cabinet or drawer, but it must be a darkened environment where the temperature is not too high.

Step 6: When you have done all that you need to do, you must leave the mixture in the drawer or cabinet for about three to four weeks for it to grow. Meanwhile, cover the mixture with soil and continue to spray with water to keep it damp even as the mushrooms grow.

Mushroom Farming in Nigeria

This Mushroom Farm is a good example of commercial open mushroom farming

But in the case of a log, you must make sure the wood is safe for the growth of your mushrooms, cut holes into the wood and then introduce the mushroom spawn into the holes in the log wood. After which, you will have to put the log under a shade, with continuous spraying of water until the mushrooms start to develop.

Whatever medium you decide to use in cultivating your mushrooms, you must make sure you put all the measures that I have discussed in place and you can be sure to have a bountiful harvest of mushrooms at the end of the day.

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19 Comments

  • sam September 28, 2014

    very educative. Need more info on how to start a business in Nigeria

  • STEHENA IFEOMA February 24, 2016

    I can’t thank you enough for the exposition and orientation. I’ve always dreamed of a big farm full of mushrooms and always thought it was whimsical,unimaginable and impracticable, but this is because I never thought that a mere fungus which has no seeds, stems or root could be farmed. I can’t wait to start up already!
    PLEASE, WHERE AND HOW DO I GET THE MUSHROOM SPAWN IN NIGERIA?

  • STEHENA IFEOMA February 24, 2016

    PLEASE CONTACT ME ON PHONE OR E-MAIL IF ANY IDEA ON HOW OR WHERE TO GET THE MUSHROOM SPAWN IN NIGERIA.

    • KINGSLEY May 17, 2016

      STEPHENA IFEOMA,

      CONGRATULATIONS FOR HAVING INTEREST IN MUSHROOM FARMING.

      WHICH AREA ARE YOU GOING TO DO THE FARMING LAGOS OR EAST.

      INDICATE YOUR AREA I CAN DIRECT YOU ON WHERE TO GET THE MUSHROOM SPAWNS

  • justus Eka April 11, 2016

    Very educative and I look forward to knowing more about this business. Please dose any one know some one I can contact and meet in person so I can start learning more. Thanks

  • Igben David April 14, 2016

    Darlington, I don’t know how to thank you sufficiently for your pains taking efforts to teach people successful business ideas in such unreserved manner, you are so kind. Thanks a milliion. I ‘ve being contempulating on the possibility of cultivating mushroom as a farming activtiy for a very long time, so your write up is in answer to my dream, coming through. Now, please sir, show me where and how I can get the spawn, the mushroom seed to buy. Again, sir, I would like to have your phone number to get more detail to enable me set up an open commercial farm like the one pictured in your write up here. I retired in March last year (2015), and I ‘ve being sitting idle at home ever since. I want to go it full time. I know am pressing you harder than am supposed, but it need be so because I despirately want to start, so my good able brother, help me. I will appreciate it. Am available at. Thanks. Igben David. Am in ughelli, Delta State.

    • Darlinton Omeh April 14, 2016

      Mushroom does not grow seeds neither does it have seeds. You need to learn mushroom spawn preparation or buy spawn from the market. You can get a good culture by mixing:- 79% Sawdust, 15% Rice Bran, 2% Lime, 2% Gypsum and 2% Milled Corn substrate. You can get your mushroom spawn in Nigeria from the Federal Institute of Industrial Research (FIIR), Oshodi, Lagos.

  • Akano Ayuba Damilola April 21, 2016

    Thank so much sir, I will surely act on this with immediate effect

  • JANE OKIA May 18, 2016

    i would like to thank you for this knowledge about the mushrooms but i Ugandan women in Africa would like to try this out .Please i request for advise how to start from preparing the garden

  • Popoola samuel olubunmi June 21, 2016

    Thanks for your precious idea. I am about starting a MUSHROOM farming here in my town Ogbomoso Oyo State Nigeria, i intend to start with 2 acres of land with an expert on MUSHROOM farming, sir where can i sell when i harvest?
    Thank you.

  • Agnes Vandu Umeanor June 29, 2016

    Please how do I get the spawn, I want to go into Mushroom farming in Abia State in Eastern part of Nigeria

  • Amaka July 11, 2016

    Thank you for this eye opener. I am an unrepentant entrepreneur with passion for farming. I have a piece of land at Ogun State and want to use part of it for MUSHROOM farming. Thank you for this eye opener. Please how can i contact you to get more details i need for this. May i have you contact please.

  • Ann July 13, 2016

    Very good information, where can I get the spawn for oyster mushroom from I intend to start small in Port Harcourt. Also where and how do I market it when I harvest?!

  • Alozie Sylvia July 15, 2016

    I am very pleased with your efforts in getting Nigeria back to farming. I will join immediately.I am in the Awka .please how do I get your phone no .

  • Joseph July 24, 2016

    Hi, I’m resident in Eastern Nigeria and I need directions on where I can get spawn and further guide on how to grow mushrooms. My contact details are:

  • Odunayo Ojo July 28, 2016

    Plz make a video of steps on how to grow it. Thankz

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