Cultivating Tricholoma (Calocybe) gambosum

Colin Davidson cabd2 at
Mon May 13 04:37:08 EST 2002

"Daniel B. Wheeler" <dwheeler at> wrote in message
news:6dafee1b.0205080923.4ccc60e9 at
> "Colin Davidson" <cabd2 at> wrote in message
news:<pgpmoose.200205081027.19554 at>...
> > Dear All,

> The first problem with trying to grow any mushroom is deciding what it
> grows _on_ or _with_, Colin. Polyporus squamosus is saprophytic, so
> there is no question in mind it would grow readily from sterilized 90%
> sawdust/10% bran combination, perhaps with a source of calcium added.
> I believe I have seen this mushroom growing locally, but it has never
> been identified by other mycologists as what _I_ identify it as, so
> have not really tried it. However, at least one person who brought it
> to a fall Oregon Mycological Society display said it was growing on
> massive chips produced by chipping Acer macrophyllum (Bigleaf maple).

I'm not as interested in P. squamosus as a target for cultivation. I
heartily agree that this one would be fairly easy to grow, as it has a wide
host range and can be found found throughout the U.K. growing on deadwood of
all types. Inoculating stumps with mycelium ought to be a fairly
straightforward procedure, but as this one is such a common find in the wild
all through the season it seems less worthy of cultivation than T. gambosum.

> Tricholoma gambosum may be symbiotic, like Tricholoma magnivelare. In
> that case, it would first be necessary to decide what tree species
> were most likely hosting the mycelium. What are the trees most
> commonly found near T. gambosum? I don't have that species here, so my
> lack of observations on the species are not going to help much.

In my opinion T. gambosum is exceedingly unlikely to be mycorhizal, or even
associated with, any particular sort of tree. It is found in woodlsnds, but
it's also found in pasture separated by tens of yards from trees. I've found
it under oaks, horse chestnuts, sycamores, hazels, apples, and well
separated from trees. It tends to grow in fairly substantial rings, and I've
been unable to find any particular nutrient source within the rings to
suggest to me that they're feeding off a particular dead stump.

That said, there's nothing to be lost by spreading some mycelium under some
potential target trees.

> However, if you are going to attempt cultivating it, I'd suggest
> creating a slurry of water and well-pulverized fresh T. gambosum, then
> pouring the mixture under a similar tree (or group of trees) similar
> to where you found them originally growing.

Not a bad plan at all. I'm more likely to have a go at getting it growing in
culture (the plates are sitting next to me now, a day and a half old, but no
visible growth yet) and then, if it grows, I'll produce a large batch of
liquid culture. From there I'll follow some of Stamets recipies, which have
served me reasonably well in the past with Pleurotus ostreatus.

> Symbiotic fungi cultivation requires as much knowledge of forestry as
> it does mycology. Maybe your inoculation will the first productive
> experiment of its kind! Good luck!

Thanks. I'll keep the NG posted should I get anywhere!

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