Cultivating Oyster Mushrooms for Mycofiltration

May 17, 2022

Our first session in the small field lab with Dr. Christian Taylor entailed some interesting work with mycelium and getting the low-down on it’s wonders via the microscope. It really is a mind-boggling being, with some extraordinary behaviours and properties.

Joining us for the day was Caleb, a student from the Sustainable Earth Institute at Plymouth University. He is busy working on the implementation of a natural intervention along Holbeton Brook. Using a native strain of Oyster fungus mycelium, we will see if this makes any impact on the high levels of E.coli and other bacteria issues that effect not just this waterway but so many of our rivers, streams and brooks.

Another plus for the last few weeks is (finally) a really cracking batch of biochar. Having spent some time with the ‘Little Punk’ trying out different techniques and material, Frank and Christian decided to try sealing the edges of the lid with clay. The clay was just lying about, having been dug up to create our spot on the industrial estate. And bingo – it was perfect.

So now we have a variety of substrates with a variety of mycelium growing through them in the field lab – some appear to be thriving others less so. But failure is an inevitable part of this project as there’s simply not enough known about the incredible world of fungi, so we will just try, try and try again whilst hoping to fail fast, learn lots, and have a few successes on the way.