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Mushroom Substrate Recipe and How To: A Proven Method for Long-Term Success

Are you eager to venture into mushroom cultivation and craft your substrate blocks? If you cannot make your own Substrate or you don't have the right tools at Webster Mycology, we sell our substrate, and you can find it on our website or using our link here. Let's take a peek into our process using Bubba's Barrel Sterilizer as an example:


Step 1: Prepare Your Mushroom Substrate Recipe


Picture this: you've got a blend of 40% (~2.8lbs) Soybean hull pellets, 40% (~2.8lbs) Oak pellets, and 10% (~0.7lbs) Wheat bran powder. Mix them up, and voila! You've got yourself a nutrient-rich substrate mixture perfect for mushroom Substrate cultivation. Our recipe churns out 7 lbs of substrate, but feel free to adjust the proportions to suit your preferences and budget.



Step 2: Load the Barrel


Next, it's time to load the barrel. Pop your substrate mixture into Bubba's Barrel Sterilizer, arranging the bags or containers evenly inside. Leave some wiggle room for the steam to circulate and work its magic. We like to use a flower-type style, with an outer ring of 6 and an

inner ring of 3.



Step 3: Seal and Sterilize


Now, let's get down to business. Seal up the barrel nice and tight, and adjust the sterilization settings to suit your altitude. Not sure what setting to use? A quick Google search can help you find your altitude and the corresponding boiling point for your area. At our place, we like to run Bubba's Barrel at 1 degree Fahrenheit below boiling.


We have found that if you don't weigh the top of Bubba's Barrel, steam will come out of the edges and not get up to temperature. We put a cinderblock and a couple of 2-lb weights along the edges to help create a better seal and vent only from the pre-drilled holes on the top.



Step 4: Monitor the Process


Keep a close eye on the temperature and pressure within the barrel as it works its sterilization magic. Most modern sterilizers come with handy sensors and controls for easy monitoring and adjustment. Find what works best for you and your setup, keeping in mind your budget and goals.


You should not have to worry about pressure. Still, suppose the sensor is blocked or covered by one of the substrate bags, or there isn't room for circulation around the sensor. In that case, your blocks will heat too much and cause melt points, especially on the bottom layer.



Step 5: Cool Down and Ventilation


Once the sterilization cycle is complete, roll Bubba's Barrel into a clean, sterilized room and let it cool for at least 12 hours before handling any blocks. This gradual cool down in a clean-air room helps prevent contamination and ensures your substrate blocks stay sterilized. Remember to ventilate the barrel carefully to release any leftover steam.


Suppose you don't have a clean air room or a clean place to put your baby's barrel in your budget. Covering your barrel after a cook with a 99.9% filter sheet will help cut down on contamination a lot.



Step 6: Unload and Store


After the cooldown period, carefully unload your freshly sterilized substrate blocks from Bubba's Barrel. Handle them with care to avoid any contamination, and store them in a clean, dry spot until you're ready to get your mushroom-growing game on.


Remember, this is just an example of how we do things around here. Feel free to experiment and find what works best for you and your setup. If you have any questions, you can reach out to me on all my social media linked below.



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