Essential Reading for the Mushroom Grower:
Radical Mycology, McCoy, P. (2016):
Interwoven with short essays on the lessons of the fungi, Radial Mycology begins with chapters that explore the uniqueness of fungal biology, the critical ecological roles of micro and macro fungi, how to accurately identify mushrooms and mycorrhizal fungi, the importance of lichens as medicines and indicators of environmental quality, and the profound influences that fungi have held on the evolution of all life and human cultures. With this foundation laid, the reader is then equipped to work with the fungi directly. Techniques for making potent fungal medicines, growing fermenting fungi for food, and cheaply cultivating mushrooms using recycled tools (and yet still achieving lab-quality results) are explored in-depth. Subsequent chapters grow far beyond the limits of other books on mushrooms. Detailed information on the principles and practices of natural mushroom farming–largely influenced by the design system of permaculture–is presented along with extensive information on cultivating mycorrhizal fungi and the science of mycoremediation, the application of fungi to mitigate pollution in the environment and in our homes. The book ends with deeper insights into the social effects that fungi present from the reflection of mycelial networks in the design of whole societies to a rigorous examination of the history of psychoactive fungi. Written for the beginner as well as the experienced mycologist, Radical Mycology is an invaluable reference book for anyone interested in Do-It-Yourself (or Do-It-Together) homesteading, community organizing, food security, natural medicine, grassroots bioremediation, and the evolution of human-fungal-ecological relations. More than a book on mushrooms, Radical Mycology is a call to ally with the fungi in all efforts to spawn a healthier world. Heavily referenced and vibrantly illustrated by the author, this unprecedented book will undoubtedly remain a classic for generations to come.
The Mushroom Cultivator: A Practical Guide for Growing Mushrooms at Home, Stammets, P (1985):
Mushroom cultivation in the Western world has been a mysterious art. This guide covers every aspect of growing mushrooms at home. It gives step-by-step instructions for every procedure from starting spore cultures to harvesting fruiting bodies and dealing with contaminants and pests.
Growing Gourmet and Medicinal Mushrooms, Stammets, P. (1994):
With updated production techniques for home and commercial cultivation, detailed growth parameters for 31 mushroom species, a trouble-shooting guide, and handy gardening tips, this revised and updated handbook will make your mycological landscapes the envy of the neighborhood.
Organic Mushroom Farming and Mycoremediation: Simple to Advanced and Experimental Techniques for Indoor and Outdoor Cultivation, Cotter, T. (2014):
Organic Mushroom Farming and Mycoremediation is a complete guide to indoor and outdoor mushroom cultivation ranging from the fundamentals of mushroom ecology and life cycle to extremely advanced and experimental techniques the author developed for morel cultivation, training mycelium to respond to bacteria and environmental contaminants, and more. The content of the book is heavily weighted towards cultivation there is only one chapter on mycoremediation but the key point to understand is that throughout the text the author discusses important principles of fungi behaviour that form the foundation of mycoremediation. Tradd approaches cultivation with a holistic framework, stressing that an understanding of the relationships between organisms and different kingdoms of life is critical to successful cultivation, remediation, or other applications. His approach is also distinctly scientific, guiding readers through lab work and experimentation and constantly reinforcing the idea that the most important skills in mushroom cultivation are careful observation, and the ability to think like a mushroom .
The Essential Guide to Cultivating Mushrooms, Russell, S. (2016):
From the basics of using mushroom kits to working with grain spawn, liquid cultures, and fruiting chambers, Stephen Russell covers everything you need to know to produce mouthwatering shiitakes, oysters, lion’s manes, maitakes, and portobellos. Whether you’re interested in growing them for your own kitchen or to sell at a local market, you’ll soon be harvesting a delicious and abundant crop of mushrooms.
Mycelium Running: A Guide to Healing the Planet through Gardening with Gourmet and Medicinal Mushrooms (2004):
“Mycelium Running” is a manual for the mycological rescue of the planet. That’s right: growing more “mushrooms” may be the best thing we can do to save the environment, and in this groundbreaking text from mushroom expert Paul Stamets, you’ll find out how.
Fungi of Temerate Europe Volume 1 & 2, Laessoe, T. (2019): An unprecedented two-volume exploration of the fungi of temperate Europe. Fungi of Temperate Europe is one of the most comprehensive mycological guides ever published. Featuring more than 7,000 photographs, this lavish two-volume set treats more than 2,800 species of fungi across the region.
Including agarics, boletes, chanterelles and morels but also more obscure groups such as cyphelloids, cup fungi, pyrenomycetous fungi and hysterioids, this guide takes an unprecedentedly broad approach to communicating fungal diversity. All species are illustrated with one or more photographs and information is given on morphology, ecology and distribution within temperate Europe. Furthermore, 1,500+ species are discussed as potential look-alikes. The books are divided into eighty “form groups,” each starting with an innovative comparison wheel with guiding photos, distinguishing characteristics and drawings of essential microscopic features. Poisonous and edible species are colour coded within the text.
Collins Fungi Guide, Buczacki, S. and Shields, C. (2012) Harper Collins London:Comprehensive and easy to use this handy field guide describes and illustrates 2,400 species.
Mushrooms and Fungi of Great Britain and Europe, Phillips, R. (1981) First edition published by Pan Books, London. 2nd edition published in 2006 by Macmillan. Wonderful colour photographs. Covers a large, carefully chosen list of fungi.
Collins Complete Guide to British Mushrooms and Toadstools, Sterry, P. and Hughes, B. (2009): HarperCollins, London. Comprehensive and very well chosen set of fungi, very well illustrated with photographs.
21st Century Guidebook to Fungi, Moore, D. (2011): Fungi have their own unique cell biology and life cycle, but also play critical roles in wider biological systems. This textbook provides a comprehensive view of fungal biology, ranging in scope from the evolutionary origins of fungi and other eukaryotes more than a billion years ago, to the impact fungi have on everyday life. Bringing mycology teaching right up to date, this unique systems biology approach emphasises the interactions between fungi and other organisms to illustrate the critical roles that fungi play in every ecosystem and food web. With more than 60 colour figures, examples of computational modelling and resource boxes directing students to areas of interest online, this book gives students an appreciation of fungi both at the organism level and in the context of wider biology.
Fungal Biology, Deacon, J. (2005): Fungal Biology is the fully updated new edition of this undergraduate text, covering all major areas of fungal biology and providing insights into many topical areas. Provides insights into many topical areas such as fungal ultrastructure and the mechanisms of fungal growth, important fungal metabolites and the molecular techniques used to study fungal populations. Focuses on the interactions of fungi that form the basis for developing biological control agents, with several commercial examples of the control of insect pests and plant diseases. Emphasises the functional biology of fungi, with examples from recent research. Includes a clear illustrative account of the features and significance of the main fungal groups.
Teaming With Fungi, Lowenfells, J. (2017): From the bestselling author of Teaming with Microbes and Teaming with Nutrients comes an important guide to mycorrhizae and the role they play in agriculture, horticulture, and hydroponics. Teaming with Fungi is the first book to accessibly explain the essential symbiotic relationship between soil-dwelling mycorrhizal fungi and plants, Almost every plant in a garden forms a relationship with fungi, and many plants would not exist without their fungal partners. By better understanding the relationship, gardeners can take advantage of the benefits of fungi, which include an increased uptake in nutrients, resistance to drought, earlier fruiting, and more. Learn how the fungi interact with plants, how to grow their own, and how best to employ them in the home garden. “This book accomplishes what few other books have – helping the public use these essential fungi to improve the immune systems of plants.” – Paul Stamets, author of Mycelium Running: How Mushrooms Can Help Save the I World
Mychorrhizal Planet, Phillips, M. (2017): Mycorrhizal fungi have been waiting a long time for people to recognize just how important they are to the making of dynamic soils. These microscopic organisms partner with the root systems of approximately 95 percent of the plants on Earth, and they sequester carbon in much more meaningful ways than human “carbon offsets” will ever achieve. Pick up a handful of old-growth forest soil and you are holding 26 miles of threadlike fungal mycelia, if it could be stretched it out in a straight line. Most of these soil fungi are mycorrhizal, supporting plant health in elegant and sophisticated ways. The boost to green immune function in plants and community-wide networking turns out to be the true basis of ecosystem resiliency. A profound intelligence exists in the underground nutrient exchange between fungi and plant roots, which in turn determines the nutrient density of the foods we grow and eat.
Exploring the science of symbiotic fungi in layman’s terms, holistic farmer Michael Phillips (author of The Holistic Orchard and The Apple Grower) sets the stage for practical applications across the landscape. The real impetus behind no-till farming, gardening with mulches, cover cropping, digging with broadforks, shallow cultivation, forest-edge orcharding, and everything related to permaculture is to help the plants and fungi to prosper . . . which means we prosper as well.
Building soil structure and fertility that lasts for ages results only once we comprehend the nondisturbance principle. As the author says, “What a grower understands, a grower will do.” Mycorrhizal Planet abounds with insights into “fungal consciousness” and offers practical, regenerative techniques that are pertinent to gardeners, landscapers, orchardists, foresters, and farmers. Michael’s fungal acumen will resonate with everyone who is fascinated with the unseen workings of nature and concerned about maintaining and restoring the health of our soils, our climate, and the quality of life on Earth for generations to come.