There are over 80 species of known edible mushrooms around 20 of these are cultivated on a large scale and yet here in the UK we are unlikely to find more than 2 or 3 species on the supermarket shelves. Beyond the edible mushrooms there are species of fungi that have been shown to have health benefits, and although not “edible” as such they are prepared in other ways, and some of these mushrooms have been used as medicine for millennia such as Reishi (Ganoderma sp.). There is a growing interest the use of “medicinal mushrooms” and the wider health benefit of consuming more fungi. The challenge is how to produce more mushrooms to meet this growing demand.
We have chosen 6 species the we believe are the easiest to cultivate for SMSFE new to mushroom cultivation. All but one species involve “natural methods” of cultivation, that is to say, grown outdoors on relatively unprocessed substrates.