How to Grow Mushrooms at Home

How to Grow Mushrooms at Home

Growing mushrooms at home can be a rewarding and surprisingly straightforward process, allowing you to enjoy fresh, flavorful fungi right from your kitchen or backyard. Whether you’re a novice gardener or an experienced plant enthusiast, here’s a detailed guide on how to grow mushrooms at home, step-by-step.

A Person cutting Mushrooms
How to Grow Mushrooms at Home


Choose Your Mushroom Species

The first step in growing mushrooms at home is selecting the type of mushrooms you want to cultivate. Popular options for beginners include:

  • Button mushrooms (Agaricus bisporus): Commonly found in grocery stores, these mushrooms are versatile and relatively easy to grow.
  • Oyster mushrooms (Pleurotus ostreatus): Known for their delicate flavor and fast growth, oyster mushrooms thrive on various substrates.
  • Shiitake mushrooms (Lentinula edodes): A favorite in Asian cuisine, shiitake mushrooms require a bit more patience but are worth the effort.

Choose a species that suits your taste preferences, growing conditions, and available space.

Obtain Mushroom Spawn or Cultures

Mushroom spawn, also known as mycelium, serves as the “seed” from which mushrooms grow. You can purchase ready-to-use mushroom spawn or cultures from garden centers, online suppliers, or specialty mushroom farms. Ensure the spawn is fresh and suitable for the species you’ve chosen.

Prepare Your Growing Substrate

Mushrooms grow on a variety of substrates, including straw, sawdust, coffee grounds, or even specialized mushroom-growing kits. Depending on the mushroom species, you may need to sterilize or pasteurize the substrate to eliminate competing organisms. Follow specific instructions provided with your chosen mushroom spawn.

Inoculate the Substrate

Once your substrate is prepared and cooled to the appropriate temperature, inoculate it with the mushroom spawn. Mix the spawn thoroughly into the substrate material using clean hands or sterile tools to ensure even distribution. Pack the inoculated substrate into containers or growing bags with pinholes for ventilation.

Provide the Right Growing Conditions

Mushrooms require specific environmental conditions to grow successfully:

  • Temperature: Maintain a consistent temperature suitable for the mushroom species. Oyster mushrooms, for example, thrive in cooler temperatures around 65-75°F (18-24°C).
  • Humidity: Mushrooms need high humidity levels to develop properly. Use a spray bottle to mist the growing area regularly or create a humid environment using a greenhouse or plastic cover.
  • Light: Most mushrooms do not require direct sunlight but need indirect light or low-level ambient light to trigger fruiting.

Maintain Moisture and Ventilation

Monitor the moisture levels in your mushroom growing environment regularly. Keep the substrate evenly moist but not waterlogged to prevent mold growth. Provide adequate ventilation by opening vents or adjusting plastic coverings to maintain airflow.

Harvest Your Mushrooms

Depending on the mushroom species, you can expect to see small mushroom “pins” forming within a few weeks to months after inoculation. Harvest mushrooms when they reach the desired size and before they release spores. Use a sharp knife or scissors to cut mushrooms at the base of the stem.

Repeat the Process

After harvesting, some mushroom species can produce multiple flushes or harvests. Follow specific guidelines for each species regarding post-harvest care and potential for additional yields.


Growing mushrooms at home is a fascinating and rewarding experience that allows you to cultivate fresh, flavorful fungi right in your kitchen or garden. By following these steps—choosing your mushroom species, obtaining mushroom spawn, preparing the substrate, inoculating, providing suitable growing conditions, maintaining moisture and ventilation, harvesting, and potentially repeating the process—you can enjoy a steady supply of mushrooms for culinary delights. Experiment with different species and methods to discover what works best for your home growing environment. Embrace the art and science of mushroom cultivation, and enjoy the delicious fruits of your labor! Happy mushroom growing!