Grow Your Own Lion's ManeNorth Spore
Lion's Mane mushroom kits are one of the easiest of all of our Grow Your Own kits. They are very reliable producers and tend to produce multiple rounds of mushrooms. They can be prone to drying out if ambient humidity is too low.
Cooking: Due to its consistency and flavor, Lion's Mane can be used as a seafood substitute in recipes. We like to slice it into rounds and pan-fry it in olive oil or butter, or try ripping it up and making 'Lion's Mane Cakes' by following a crab cake recipe with the Lion's Mane subbing in for the crab meat!
Properties: Lion's Mane is considered both an esteemed edible mushroom and a valuable medicinal and is currently being studied for its effects on neural health, Alzheimer's, and dementia. The mushroom contains a substance called erinacine, which has the ability to catalyze the production of nerve growth factor (NFG) and reduce the effects of Alzheimer's and other neurodegenerative disorders (Yamada et al., 1997). A study in Japan, on men aged 50-80 years old with mild cognitive impairment, suggests that Lion's Mane is effective at improving cognition. Subjects were split into two groups and half were given dry powdered Lion's Mane three times a day and observed over 16 weeks. At weeks 8, 12, and 16, the group taking Lion's Mane scored significantly better on a cognitive test than the other half in the placebo group (Mori et al., 2008). You can read more about this study here.
1) Your Lion’s Mane grow kit is an amended sawdust block that has been completely colonized by Lion’s Mane mushroom mycelium. Take the block and place it on its side, exposing a side where the block presses right up against the plastic bag. Take a sharp knife and slice 3 1x1 inch slices through the plastic of the bag, slicing the bag with as little damage done as possible to the block. The mushroom mycelium will sense the oxygen in the air and produce mushroom ‘pins’, another word for ‘baby mushrooms’. This should begin to happen within two weeks of slicing your bag.
2) Mushrooms need proper humidity and ventilation to survive. Place your sliced bag in the most humid part of your home and outside of direct sunlight. We suggest putting your bag on a kitchen counter somewhat close to a sink. If your home is really dry you may want to make a humidity tent to place over your bag. Simply take a trash bag or other loosely fitting plastic bag, put PLENTY of 1/2 inch holes in it (THIS IS IMPORTANT: Mushrooms exhale CO2 and inhale oxygen. They will suffocate themselves if there isn’t adequate airflow! Lion’s Mane that look stringy or strange are usually growing that way because they need more air or humidity!) Spray the outside of your block near the slice at least once per day. If you choose to use a humidity tent make sure to spray the inside of the tent once per day to maintain humidity.
3) Harvest your Lion’s Mane when it resembles the photograph on the front of your kit! Harvest when clear teeth have formed and before they begin to dry and turn golden brown. Mushrooms grow quickly, so when you spot your first mushroom pins keep a close eye on them. The warmer the environment the faster they will grow. Mushrooms should be ready to harvest 4-7 days after pin formation.
4) We guarantee the first harvest of Lion's Mane mushrooms, but you may choose to attempt a second, third, or fourth fruiting off your block! Harvests usually diminish in size with each consecutive fruiting. We recommend giving your block a one week break from spraying before re-starting the process of spraying your blocks with water daily!
*CAUTIONS AND CONSIDERATIONS:
IF YOU PLAN ON CONSUMING YOUR HOME-GROWN MUSHROOMS, MAKE SURE TO COOK THEM THOROUGHLY. IF IT IS YOUR FIRST TIME EATING THIS SPECIES, IT IS BEST TO START WITH A SMALL AMOUNT TO SEE HOW YOUR BODY RESPONDS!
MUSHROOMS PRODUCE SPORES AS THEY DEVELOP. THIS IS A NATURAL MEANS OF REPRODUCTION FOR THE FUNGUS. THEY USUALLY APPEAR AS A DUSTY SURFACE ON YOUR GROW KIT BENEATH THE MUSHROOM CAPS. PEOPLE WITH ALLERGIES OR COMPROMISED IMMUNE SYSTEMS MAY WANT TO CONSIDER PUTTING FRUITING MUSHROOM KITS OUTDOORS OR IN A WELL-VENTILATED AREA AS AIRBORNE SPORES SOMETIMES CAUSE RESPIRATORY IRRITATION. SPORES MAY ALSO CAUSE IRRITATION FOR SOME NON-ALLERGIC OR IMMUNE COMPROMISED MUSHROOM GROWERS, THOUGH THIS IS RARE. HARVESTING MUSHROOMS WHILE STILL IN THEIR YOUNGER GROWTH STAGES WILL REDUCE THE OVERALL SPORE LOAD.