low_tech_mushrooms from farm wastes

Lion Kuntz lionkuntz at email.com
Sat Sep 1 00:50:35 EDT 2001

I was emailed from an agricultural missionary in Swaziland South Africa about suggesting references for cultivating mushrooms as a self-help project for desperately poor elderly women. It seems that there is no social security, and the average income of $100/month is insufficient.

I returned a group of website addresses which give some how-to-do-it directions, but it was intersperced with sites which rely on computer-controlled environments and high upfront capital investments which scared the correspondant. He wrote again asking for other ideas for lower tech income projects. Again I sent off some ideas on backyard or cottage industry growing of sprouts, baby greens, chickens and/or rabbits. But I decided to go back and revise the list of links to mushroom growing to concentrate only on the easist and lowest tech ideas.

I thought I would share these with the general public, as they have virtue in promoting higher living standards obtainable while recycling agricultural waste products. If the biomass is headed to the compost pile anyway, what do you have to lose if 50% of your low-tech mushroom crops fail? The worst that will happen is the stuff goes into the compost pile a little earlier than it would have. The potential reward is 50% of your efforts turn wastes like straw, corn stalks/cobs or water hyacinths into $5/lb exotic mushrooms, and the spent mushroom compost is turned into an edible, palatable, and digestable food for chickens/pigs/cattle. 50% of something is better than 100% of nothing.

Anyway, here's the link:

See other high-yield integrated biological systems webpages: 

Source of references to illustrate an integrated micro-farming concept of growing all your own fertilizers-IPM-herbicides while producing meat, fish, vegetables as cash crops on small plots of land. 
A unified conceptualization of perpetually sustainable microfarming, with emphasis on saving endangered species by human retreat from unnecessarily wasteful and polluting practices. Includes many scientific references to the size of the ongoing species extinction tragedy. [Not frequently updated -- see alternative page below.] 
LINKS to references for the fertilizer values of cultured earthworm castings and vermicompost. 
LINKS to references for the fertilizer values of cultured earthworm castings and vermicompost. 
Growing Earthworms: an overview of the sources and methods for using earthworms to increase fertilizer values of agricultural wastes, and other beneficial aspects of castings. 
LINKS to references for the fertilizer values, and animal feed values, of waste byproducts from raising chickens on the farmstead. Beyond the value of meat/eggs, these links illustrate the contributions of a chicken flock which is processed on the farm. 
LINKS to references for the fertilizer values of using Spent Mushroom Substrate (SMS) as feed for earthworms, or as animal feeds for chickens/pigs/cattle, and its contributions as fertilizer to the wormery or compost bin. 
LINKS to references for medicinal and edible Mushroom Cultivation which can be used as an integral (and profitable) part of a farm wastes recycling program. 
LINKS to references for low-tech mushroom cultivation, with special emphasis on Paddy Straw and Oyster mushroom cultivation, based of recycling farm wastes like grain straw, corn cobs and corn stalks, or pond water hyacinths you can grow for nothing. 
LINKS to references for the fertilizer values of waste byproducts from raising rabbits on the farmstead. 
The most currently updated copy of the Life Saviors endangered species rescue and protection concept by human retreat from unnecessarily wasteful and polluting practices. Includes many scientific references to the size of the ongoing species extinction tragedy. 
Summarized overview of strategies for high-yield, intensive farming productivity by using the Integrated Biological Systems approach. Includes exposures of widespread myths. Links to further detailed information. 
Practical ideas for growers with small fields to increase productivity. An illustrated description of raised bed intensive cropping which can increase yields 20% higher, to over 1,000% in some cases, compared to conventional row-cropping. Includes links to extreme productivity sites from several continents showing the reality of using these kinds of high-yield intensive ideas. 

Contact Author: LionKuntz at email.com 



Talk More, Pay Less with Net2Phone Direct(R), up to 1500 minutes free! 


More information about the Market-farming mailing list