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Are there edible mushrooms, that will grow well on Banana leaves?  RSS feed

 
Wyatt Brush
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Location: Meade County, South Dakota
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I have a pet banana plant, that produces leaves faster than they are rotting in the pot. Is there an edible mushroom that will help break the leaves down faster? I have the plant in a large mineral lick tub, and the chopped up leaves are several inches thick on top of the soil. Any good information will be greatly appreciated!
 
John Saltveit
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I would chop it up and put it in the compost. Many mushrooms, agaricus comes to mind, thrive in very rich grass and compost blends.
John S
PDX OR
 
Christine Wilcox
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Location: Los Anchorage, near Alaska
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Aloha Culture bank has some good ideas that were geared to processing waste streams to improve income of African small holding farms, but the specifics of the banana leaves as a substrate is not clearly described. Their web site also contains excellent resources for low temp systems of pasteurization.

http://www.alohaculturebank.com/mushroom-growing.pdf.

Tradd Cotter has also spent time developing techniques for using common tropical organic waste in mushroom culture, which is described in his book. He has focused on attempt to help Haitian farming recover. I think there are some useful chapters in his book. My copy is out on loan, and I can't confirm this recollection.

http://mushroommountain.com/products/organic-mushroom-farming-and-mycoremediation

As rule of thumb that helps determine what can be expected, a good yield might be a lb of mushroom for a lb of DRY weight of substrate. You could probably find an oyster strain that would grow on dried and pasteurized banana waste, but simplified systems will be trickier. However, the results are sometimes interesting if you obtain a yield with little work. Some of the warm weather strains of oyster might be workable. As John notes, the waste can also be processed by composted and used to grow terciary decomposers such as Agaricus.

Good luck experimenting!
 
Wyatt Brush
Posts: 56
Location: Meade County, South Dakota
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Thank you both for your input! This is a dwarf banana plant, being grown as a house plant. Is there concern of toxicity in growing mushrooms in the house, like there is with many types of mold?
 
John Saltveit
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You can get too much of a spore load, especially from oyster mushrooms. You can grow the mycelium inside, then when it starts to fruit, move it outside.
JohnS
PDX OR
 
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