Instructions For Monotub
Purchase the monotub of your choice, any large, clear tote container and tight fitting lid will suffice.
The mushrooms need to breathe so you need to drill holes in the monotub. The diameter of the holes should be about 2 ‘’’. The holes must be above where the bulk substrate will come to. Using a drill bit that is modified for making holes, drill a hole every 7.5 ‘’ along the side and ensure there is a hole on each end. Once drilling is finished. Use polyfill to stuff the holes. This will act as a filter, allowing air to flow through but limiting the number of particles floating in. Consider taping in place. Some growers opt to paint the bottom half of their monotub or line it with a black garbage bag. This is a measure to prevent side pinning, as light is a trigger for the direction that the mushrooms grow. Side pinning is not detrimental; it is simply mushrooms that are growing at the side of the bulk substrate. These pins use up nutrient resources and are often difficult to harvest.
Colonized grain spawn is necessary for monotub inoculations. You want to ensure the mycelium has covered the sterilized grain before inoculating. When the bag is fully covered in white the spawn is fully colonized and ready for your monotub.
Sanitize – THIS STEP IS CRUCIAL. Before you inoculate your monotub you need to make certain that everything that will be in proximity to your grain spawn and substrate is clean. Make sure to wear disposable gloves. Spray and wipe everything down with isopropyl alcohol. This includes your work surface, the inside and outside of your monotub, the lid, the outsides of your 3 Amigos spawn and coco coir bags, as well as the scissors you use to cut open your substrate. Ensure you spray your gloved hands before cutting open the bags.
Mixing – We Amigos recommend a 1:2 or 1:3 ratio of grain spawn to coco-coir monotub mix. Two bags at 1.5kg of monotub mix should be enough to inoculate a moderately sized monotub. Using gloved hands, first squeeze a handful of coco coir mix as hard as you can to check that it’s at field capacity. You want a small tiny stream of water trickling down your hand when you squeeze. Spray the substrate with tap water if it’s not quite there yet. Then, break up your grain spawn bag by massaging the bag so that the grains are loose and can be easily distributed in your tub. Using scissors, cut open your substrate and spawn bags. Begin to layer your monotub: add an approximately 1’’ layer of coco substrate mix into your monotub, covering the entire bottom. Then, sprinkle a thin layer of grain spawn all over the first layer. Repeat laying your substrates in a lasagne-like pattern until you have reached your desired height and finished off both bags. Make sure you end with a layer of coco coir substrate mix encasing all of your grains. Do not leave any grains exposed–grains are extremely nutrient dense and pose a threat for contamination.
Once you have filled your tub, put the lid on and do not take it off until your substrate is fully colonized, this should take about 1-3 weeks.
Place your tub somewhere at room temperature and away from direct sunlight, but with indirect lighting in natural cycles.
The average substrate will take approx 1-3 weeks to colonize. A fully colonized monotub will be coated in a layer of white mycelium. Look for signs of pinning. Once you see pins (mini mushroom stubs) it is now safe to remove the lid to mist and fan your tub.
Instructions on adding airflow and moisture – 2-3 times a day fan and mist your tub. Take the lid off and with gloved hands, fan your tub for approximately 1 minute. Then, mist the mushrooms with a spray bottle of tap water until the top layer of substrate is moist and you can see beads of moisture on the side walls of your tub. Put the lid back on, and repeat this another one – two times throughout the day. After you see pins, your mushrooms should take anywhere between two to seven days to fully mature.
This step is important to get right if you want an abundant crop. Missing the harvest window by a few hours can be the difference between a dazzling golden cap and a tarnished substrate with black ink spores. Your fungi babies are ready to harvest when the caps have just started to open up and the veil is about to break. Make sure you harvest your mushrooms prior to this veil breaking, or you risk the mushroom sporulating (spreading its spores) onto the substrate. When this happens, it will limit the next crop and reduce future mushroom yield. It’s better to harvest earlier before the veil breaks. You can harvest your mushrooms by slicing the bottoms of the stems with a knife, or taking a gloved hand and twisting and pulling the bottom of the mushroom stalk. We prefer the twist and pull method. Even as you harvest, continue to maintain your monotub by fanning and misting. Your tub will continue to produce several flushes–somewhere between two to five flushes. When your substrate is completely “spent” you can recycle the spent substrate by crumpling and burying the mycelium soil in your garden. The mycelium helps your roots retain moisture, so your plants and veggie garden can grow happy and healthy.
We recommend you dry the mushrooms with a commercial food dehydrator, which can be easily purchased online. Be careful, the psilocybin compound is degraded by high temperatures, therefore it is best to dry the mushrooms at the lowest setting to preserve the plant medicine.
Brush any substrate off the mushroom, place the largest mushrooms on the top ring tray and the smallest on the bottom ring tray. If your dehydrator does not have a timer, set the temperature to 110-120ºF. Set an alarm or timer for two hours. Check trays and remove dried mushrooms once the timer goes off. It may take longer. You will know if they are done by checking whether they’re “cracker” dry. In other words, you should be able to easily snap the stem.There should be absolutely no moisture left behind in a perfectly dried mushroom.
Bon appètit & have a great trip!