Mushroom Growing Kits

 

INTRODUCTION

Beginner Mushroom Enthusiasts Start Here

Mushroom Growing Kits are the safest and simplest way to begin your mushroom journey. For these reasons, it is essential to start with profession proven expertise. For example, I suggest the ease and expertise of a mushroom growing kit company like North Spore.

mushroom growing kits
Northspore Mushroom Growing Kits.
More About North Spore
In addition, I find it helpful to view the following videos. Along with a superior product, one wants both verbal and visual instructions for the best use. Because the following videos give detailed information about using their products, I recommend viewing them in addition to reading the written instructions.

To sum things up, I suggest that beginners start right here. Specifically, with a North Spore mushroom growing kit. Then carefully follow the directions provided in the box. Equally as important is to view the videos below.


Growing Kits | Part One
North Spore Spray & Grow Mushroom Kits | Setting-up and Maintaining Your Kit | FAQ Part 1
North Spore’s Spray & Grow mushroom kits are a great introduction to the wonders of edible mushroom cultivation. This video is Part 1 of a two video frequently asked questions series going through the process of starting your kit, harvesting your mushrooms, and tips and techniques for cooking them.

In this video, Mary, from North Spore will start each of the North Spore kits and talk about how to keep them healthy!

Video Sections

00:00:07 Introduction
00:01:02 What’s Inside
00:01:44 Starting your Kit
00:03:33 Kit Upkeep and Care


Growing Kits | Part Two
North Spore Spray & Grow Mushroom Kits | Harvesting and Cooking Your Mushrooms | FAQ Part 2
This is the second part of a two part FAQ series on North Spore’s Spray & Grow edible mushroom kits for growing mushrooms on your kitchen counter.

In this video, Lou goes over how to harvest your mushrooms and some tips and techniques for cooking them.

Video Sections

00:02:00 Harvesting your Mushrooms
00:02:50 Tips for Cooking your Harvest
00:03:30 Fat is your Friend
00:03:42 Don’t Crowd the Pan
00:04:01 Cook Your Mushrooms Longer
00:05:45 Tip for Cooking Lion’s Mane


mushroom growing kits
Mushroom Growing Kits from Northspore

CONCLUSION

Even though other brands may have wider selections, I still recommend this brand of kit to start with. That is because this kit has the simplest approach for beginners. In other words, there is no mess, no extra products are needed, the cost is fair.

So far, North Spore is the best mushroom growing kit I have discovered to date. That is because it requires no extra equipment and is reasonably priced at $28/kit. For an extra bonus, if you are an Amazon Prime member, you may be able to get them at an even better price.

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Mushrooms Cultivation on Logs

 

INTRODUCTION

Mushroom cultivation on logs is an option for growing mushrooms. As mentioned in an earlier blog post, it is not suggested for beginners. But it is the topic of this blog post. Here is a quote from the Fungi Ally Newsletter about it.

mushroom cultivation on logs

“Mushroom cultivation on logs has a long history. It’s also a great way to grow mushrooms over periods of time because the logs can produce for years. Sawdust spawn and plug spawn are great for inoculating logs, and there are a variety of mushroom species that you can grow on logs and stumps. What mushrooms are you most interested in currently? We have lots of audience members who love growing lion’s mane.

“Popular species to grow on logs include shiitake and oysters. Regardless of your preference, we hope to help you get growing this late summer into fall! ​​​​​​​It’s also a good time to start growing mushrooms indoors as well. The easiest way of doing this is by using our mushrooms kits that come ready-to-fruit. ​​​​​​Until next time, get down with some mycelium and stay tuned for the next newsletter.​​​​​​​”

mushroom cultivation on logs
Mushroom cultivation on logs. Image from the Fungi Ally Newsletter.
Mushroom cultivation on logs is just one option for growing mushrooms at home. It is an outdoor technique and not one for the beginner.

As mentioned earlier, growing mushrooms indoors from a kit is ideal since it is simple and safe. Many companies, including Fungi Ally, carry excellent kits for beginners.

 

CONCLUSION

There are various ways to obtain mushrooms:
•purchase them retail in stores or online
•grown them from a kit
•cultivate them (more to come about cultivation techniques)

Cultivating mushrooms on logs is on one of these options. Others will be presented in this series of blog posts about cultivating mushrooms.

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Growing Mushrooms at Home

 

INTRODUCTION

MUSHROOM GROWING KITS To start, mushroom growing kits are the safest and simplest way for a beginner enthusiast to grow their own mushrooms. To make things the safest and easier, there are many beginner kits available. Therefore this post will be a synopsis some of them.

Although this method can be expensive, I believe it is the best way to begin. Most likely, an ardent beginner will probably want to move on to more advanced ways of participating in this activity. That’s not a problem as long as a beginner has moved on in training and experience. Just For now, I suggest to start with a choice from one of the many mushroom growing kits.

GROW, GROW, GROW
As mentioned above, purchasing a kit can be an expense. But is the best way to begin growing mushrooms. You can grow them right in your own kitchen. Here are several kits to choose from. Just follow the directions to begin your journey to growing mushrooms at home.

Gourmet Mushroom Growing Kits

mushroom growing kits
Samples of products from Gourmet Mushroom Kits

Fungi Ally

mushroom growing kits
Fungi Ally offers mushroom growing kits as well as other mushroom products

Northspore

mushroom growing kits
North Spore Mushroom Growing Kits

Midwest Grow Kits

mushroom growing kits
Midwest Mushroom Growing Kits

A video from Fungi Ally about growing mushrooms at home from a mushroom growing kit.

Additional posts about Mushrooms
My Past Professions, Present Passions and Possible Future Explorations Mirror the World of Mushrooms
Reading Material About Mushrooms
Mushroom Growing Kits
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My Past Professions, Present Passions and Possible Future Explorations Mirror the World of Mushrooms

 

INTRODUCTION

It is amazing how mushrooms mirror past professions. In other words, my past professions, my current passionate pursuits, my hobbies and possible future explorations, all mirror the world of mushrooms. This is illustrated by the diagram below.
mushrooms-mirror-past-professions
My past professions mirror the qualities of mushrooms and their most important conclusion, consciousness.

 

FIRST PROFESSIONAL CATEGORY: DECORATIVE ART & DESIGN
Their design is the first category where mushrooms mirror past professions. The intricacies of the designs of these fungi are unique while displaying a myriad of potential conversions into human structures. Enjoy this YouTube video showing the splendid morphology of mushroom. One wonders how much indigenous architecture is instinctively based on structure in the world of mushrooms.


This is a video clip from Fantastic Fungi directed by Louie Schwartzberg.

 

DESIGN
Their structural wonder is also clearly shown by the anatomy of a mushroom illustration below from the group, NY Mushroom Hunters.
mushrooms-mirror-past-professions
An illustration of the anatomy of a mushroom

 

SECOND PROFESSIONAL CATEGORY: FOOD | BEVERAGES | INDOOR FARMING
FOOD
The category that practically screams how mushrooms mirror past professions is next. This is because of my involvement with these qualities. We love to eat them. An art of cooking and eating them abounds in all its culinary splendor.
mushrooms-mirror-past-professions
A Virtual Cookbook as part of Fantastic Fungi

 

INDOOR FARMING aka GROW AT HOME
There are numerous companies and a myriad of mushrooms to choose from to grow your own mushrooms at home. In fact, this is the safest and simplest way for beginners to grow their own mushrooms.
mushrooms-mirror-past-professions
These mushrooms were grown with a kit from AwakenMyco.com. It includes spore impregnated growing medium tightly packed in plastic. Cut holes in it, water and watch them grow.

 

THIRD PROFESSIONAL CATEGORY: FINANCE & SURVIVAL

In the movie, Fantastic Fungi, it is made clear that we could not exist, even that the earth could not exist without fungi. In fact, the processes of destruction and creation are intrinsic to the world of mushrooms and to our existence.

 

FOURTH PROFESSIONAL CATEGORY: HEALTH & HEALING

Mushrooms that are safe to eat are filled with vitamin D3. It has been said that they are essential for vegetarians and vegans. Two mushrooms a day are said to be healthful. In addition, there is research documenting how certain mushroom can be healing physically and mentally. The above video goes into some detail about these qualities of mushrooms.

 

FIFTH PROFESSIONAL CATEGORY: FUN & EDUCATION
As long as we stay open to the flow of intelligence available in the universe, we will learn, grow and enjoy the fruits of this labor.

 

SIXTH PROFESSIONAL CATEGORY: DIGITAL WORLD
The digital world is a reflection of the network of mycelia that connect under the earth. Mycelia are like the roots that bear fruit. Mushrooms are that fruit that appear above ground. As nature, the universes brain creates connection, man’s brain has created the internet.

 

SEVENTH EXPLORATORY CATEGORY: CONSCIOUSNESS
One can not help wondering about the intelligence that flowed through my past professions as they mirrored the qualities of mushrooms. Was it a coincidence or the level of consciousness that flows through us as we connect with nature’s nature. Continued study and exploration will reveal more about how mushrooms mirror past professions as well as future explorations.
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Dance to the Polka Dots Pattern

 

polka-dots-pattern
A border of polka dots patterns colors from a Yahoo search for polka dots

INTRODUCTION

As much as I love plaid and check patterns, polka dots patterns will always bring great joy to my heart. For example, I will smile or even laugh whenever I see them or think about them. Therefore when I see clothes or home decor in polka dots, I find it irresistible to buy them.
polka-dots-pattern
Marilyn Monroe in a polka dots pattern two piece bathing suit

 

APPEAL

I was very curious to learn about the history of my beloved pattern since the only thing I knew about polka was a dance named the polka.

As a matter of fact, I wondered if there was any correlation between the two, the dance and the pattern.

Therefore, an online search should answer my question. But even before an answer to its history, I got side tracked.

It is undeniable that it has been very popular. Although one critic insisted that the pattern was childish, polka dots clearly have a much wider appeal than just to children.

The pose of Marilyn Monroe above in a two piece polka dots pattern bathing suit attests to the most outstanding quality of this pattern. That is its appeal to adults not just children. Similar to it is the appeal of the photo below of Victoria Silvstedt. Even more so, her polka dots bikini barely covers her.

MORE (OR LESS)

polka dot
Strutting her stuff: Victoria Silvstedt, who has worked with top designers including Chanel, Christian Dior and Valentino, looked incredible in the bandeau bikini which did little to contain her assets.
“Strutting her stuff: Victoria Silvstedt, who has worked with top designers including Chanel, Christian Dior and Valentino, looked incredible in the bandeau bikini which did little to contain her assets.”

Quote from The Daily Mail

 

MUSIC


Let’s Have A Party Polka – Walter Ostanek, Brian Sklar and Western Senators – Polkarama! from Youtube.

 

HISTORY OF THE POLKA DOT PATTERN

polka-dots-history
The woman festooning polka dot hair scarves resembles ‘Rosie the Riveter. Is this a call for all women to wear polka dots?

polka-dots-history
A History Pt. 1
polk-dots-history
History Pt. 2
history
History Pt. 3
history pt. 4
History Pt. 4
history pt. 5
History Pt. 5
history Pt. 6
History Pt. 6

From PBS NewsHour: “At the Hirshhorn Museum, visitors are lining up to experience Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama’s world of whimsy, color, shapes and a peek into the beyond. Jeffrey Brown tells us why this new exhibit is currently the toughest ticket in Washington, D.C.”

 

CONCLUSION

polka dots pattern
A Simple polka dot pattern of yellow and Red from Wiki
Designs with Polka dots range from the most simple like a pattern of dots to the sublime and complex such as Yayoi Kusama – Obsessed with Polka Dots | Tate

“The nine decades of artist Yayoi Kusama’s life have taken her from rural Japan to the New York art scene to contemporary Tokyo, in a career in which she has continuously innovated and re-invented her style.” YouTube

 

SOURCES & RESOURCES

Art and Life in Africa – An exhibit at the U of IOWA
SEEING SPOTS: From lepers to paranoia: The twisted history of the polka dot from Slate.
Busty Victoria Silvstedt shows off her ample cleavage and pert derrière in polka-dot bikini as she makes a splash in St Barts

Where did the polka dots get their name and why: a brief history from legit.ng
History of polka Dots from Suzy Quilts

The Polka Dot History from South Sound Magazine

The history of the Polka dot from 425 Magazine

Polka Dot History from Cosmopolitan

Yayoi Kusama – Obsessed with Polka Dots | Tate

Priestess of Polka Dots – Yayoi Kusama

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Installation Art Projects

 

INTRODUCTION

What is installation art? Do art installations interest you? Without intention, I have created several art installation projects. Read about them in this blog post.

installation art
My collection of vintage enamel kitchenware is too old and fragile to use. As a decorative collection, it becomes installation art.
Because I have collected and created so many small to medium sized 3D objects, I have had several options of what to do with them:
1. Box them for storage
2. organized them in bigger collectibles
2. Sell them
3. Display them individually
4. Use thm
5. Create art installation projects.
In this post, I focus on the fifth option, installation art. In fact the only way everything I collect and love has a home is because I create art installations of them.

LOVELY TO LOOK AT

installation art
A Wall of Purses are gems individually and an art installation as a group

If I can’t resist, I can still take these purses off the wall and wear them one at a time. But I would rather look at them all at one time.

TAKE YOUR HAT OFF TO INSTALLATION ART

I love to wear hats. Over a century ago, when all women wore hats that were very fashionable and voluminous at that. Care and storage were a challenge. Hat boxes were essential, indeed. But they took up so much room. Those hats did not need to be part of art installations. They were installations, themselves.
I-love-hats
My Great Grandmother Annie Laber (1877-1935) in her finery.

So I created a new take on accessible hat storage and selection. This way I can choose at a moments notice which to wear for the day and which to hang up. But let’s go back just for a moment to over a century ago to what my Great Grandmother Annie Laber wore when she wore her finery.

installation art
Here’s a place to hang your hats when you’re not wearing them but you want to show them off. This was originally a plant stand.

A MINI INSTALLATION
magic-bus
Imagine this ten time bigger and an installation one could walk around and even enter like a magic bus.

Irresistible small items that imagine themselves into a mini installation.

When I start to gather these mini treasures, then put them together, I never know what whimsy will emerge.

This piece started as a small metal box, was decorated with whatever I could gather at the time. it is so much fun.

I wish I could make it ten times bigger. Imagine the size of a real magic bus big enough to sit it, enjoy the song magic bus, and capture to true meaning of an art installation.

 

 

 

 

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Bittersweet Love Stories with Turkish Actor, Engin Akyurek and His Leading Ladies

 

INTRODUCTION

Bittersweet love stories best describe much of the romantic love/hate relationships between Turkish actor, Engin Akyurek, and his leading ladies. Although these underlying themes are typical, they are expresses in sophisticated, literary, profound, and confounding ways as any romantically based compelling novel might be.
 

BITTER

bittersweet love story
Devastated Elif runs away after Omer stands her up at their wedding. Photo from the Facebook page, Black Money Love Bittersweet Updates

For example, there are Shakespearean themes, class friction, cultural mores, and deeply emotional issues. As a result, Omer gilts his fiance Elif at the altar. Although he loves her deeply, he has decided that it would be better to hurt her once with a lie than for her to have to face him daily reminded that his brother had killed her father.
 

NOT YET BITTERSWEET

The growing relationship between Omer and Elif is at times very frustrating. It grows from an embryonic seed to full flower, blossoming with painful thorns. There are continual conflicts, misunderstandings, and then bursts of passionate forgiveness. As a result, emotions run cold as ice then hot as fire. This conclusively leads to viewer tension in one’s belly to tingling through one’s entire body. This seems to be the pattern in some of Engin Akyurek bittersweet love stories. Indeed, it is part of what makes them so bittersweet yet so irresistible.

bittersweet love stories
Engin Akyurek as Kerim in Fatmagul from YouTube

 

BITTERSWEET

The bittersweet is a reprieve from the bitter. Typical of this phase is the tension that builds up between Omer and Elif that leads to the relief of a romantic embrace. In addition, this is the kind of dramatic transition for Fatmagul and Kerin in FATMAGÜL’ÜN SUÇU NE?
BÖLÜM

bittersweet love stories
Omer in a heated discussion with Elif from the Facebook page, Engin Akyurek Appreciation page

 

SWEET

In spite of those less than sweet times, we suffer through the bitter moments and even the bittersweet moments for those increasing sequences of unabashed visceral ‘oh so sweet’ passion. Using romantic creativity, an ardent Engin fan strung together a precious necklace of passion gems created by Omer and Elif romance in BLACK MONEY LOVE. This video is posted on YouTube courtesy of Sefirin Kizi.

A succession of romantic moments between Omer and Elif without stopping to take a breath. From YouTube.

 

CONCLUSION

BEYOND BITTERSWEET

Not all of Engin Akyurek’s acting roles have fallen into the bitter to sweet tastes. For example, in Olene Kadar, Engin starts with a promising future as a brilliant young medical student. Through a succession of tragic mishaps, including 11 years in prison for a crime he did not commit, an untrusting lost love, a child born out of wedlock found too late to bond with him, our hero ultimately dies an untimely death.

This is not your typical Engin heroic role. So when someone has the ability to capture the hearts of fans as well as his leading ladies chooses to cast aside his prizewinning charm, to play a dark role instead, he has the mark of a truly gifted and courageous actor. He exhibits extraordinary talent.

Although I prefer to be entertained by bittersweet love stories than one that ends in darkness, it is a privilege to view my favorite Turkish actor display such range and acting ability. From darkness comes new light. One can only wait with bated breath for what is in store for all of us Engin admirers in the future.

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The Free 7-Day Subscription Scam

 

The Free 7-Day Subscription Bait

The phone rings. An online company representative is calling to offer me a free 7-day subscription to a credit score and computer fraud prevention service. All that the representative needs to know is my credit card number to cover a $1 processing fee. The red blinking light goes off in front of my eyes as a siren screams in my head. This has to be a scam.

free 7-day subscription
Here is an email from my credit card issuer alerting me to possible credit card fraud

More clever and devious minds than mine have figured out how to rig this game. The only thing I thought I knew was how to stop it before it starts. I did not give my credit card number. In spite of this, a charge showed up on one of my credit cards for $1. So I called the credit card company to report this mistake. They reversed the charge. But the next thing I knew, I was receiving a bill for $29.94/month as my regular subscription fee. How did this happen? I did not authorize it. In fact, my credit card company contacted me because they suspected fraud. My credit card was canceled and a card with a new number was sent to me.

Deja Vu All Over Again

But it happened again with the newly issued card. How did they get my card number? I was baffled and wanted a more proactive solution. So this time, the representative from the credit card issuer said that I needed to call the company directly to cancel my subscription. That was just what I did. Then I called back the credit card folks to report my action. At this point, I was told that I had done everything I needed to. Therefore I had no liability for this entire fiasco.

The Free 7-Day Subscription Is A Scam

There is a term used in poker called a ‘tell’. It is something that gives away a bluffer’s hand. The tell in this, as well as most internet scams, is the request for a credit card number. ‘Oh,’ they say, ‘it is just to cover a processing fee’. The next thing you know a substantial charge shows up on your card and it is a regular monthly subscription. Talk about adding insult to injury.

Being Prepared

So my response to their ‘tell’ is to NOT provide a credit card number for a $1 processing fee for a 7-day trial subscription of their services. Remember, once a company has your card number, they can go to town. Then you have to find a way to stop them in their tracks in order to avoid any additional charges to this free trial. The story may not be over. The scammers may give their scheme another try. But if they do both my credit card company and I will be ready to stop them in their tracks.

free 7-day subscription
A copy of the cancellation letter that was emailed to me from the merchant

Afterword

Even after I was assured by phone and email of the cancellation of my $29.94/month subscription fee, something still bothered me. So I called the merchant back. This is what I learned. I suggest you pay close attention. First of all, even if I report fraud to my credit card company resulting in my getting a new credit card, the merchant can charge that new credit card number for the subscription. So the only way to stop it is to call the merchant itself to cancel.

In addition, after a barrage of questions by me to the customer service person, I was still not satisfied by his responses that I was the person who signed up for their 7-day free trial subscription which resulted in their $29.94/mo fee. The bottom line is that I am zero dollars out of pocket. But I was sufficiently inconvenienced. In addition, I have less trust in online security and more concern about how easy it is to be taken by less than scrupulous companies and individuals.

SOURCES & RESOURCES

“Free” Trial Offers
FTC: Consumer Information
Subscription Traps
BBB: “Free trial” shopping scams are on the rise
Buyer beware: Is that free trial really free?

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Worm Compost Tea

 

worm compost tea
Worm Compost Tea from Popular Science

Making Compost from Red Wiggler Worms

Worms and dirt are antithetical to tea, worm compost tea especially for many people. But for someone like me, who squealed with joy when my first order of worms arrived, it has been quite an exciting adventure. Everything about embarking on having an indoor farm has been thrilling and educational.

Indoor Farming

It all started when I decided to grow an indoor farm. I initially called it tabletop farming since I actually began my adventure on a regular round dining table. The reason I decided to become an indoor farmer were circumstantial.
1. I had no place to grow food outside.
2. I needed to have access to local, organic produce for both health and frugality.

Seed Mama Indoor Farming

So I began what became known as, Seed Mama Indoor Farming. The first few months were devoted completely to growing my crops of microgreens in soil. Black gold, or worm castings are the best fertilizer known to man. When they are used directly or made into worm compost tea, the provide super nutrients to anything that grows.

worm compost tea
Seed Mama Indoor Farming
Soil Is Not A Dirty Word

For a time I switched my growing method to soil-less or hydroponic growing. I didn’t focus as much on fertilizer for that process. But I missed putting my hands in the dirt. So I resumed my original passion. That really made it necessary and desirable for me to learn more about composting. Most important was for me to learn now to make worm compost tea.

worm compost tea
Soil Is Not A Dirty Word Facebook Group Cover Photo
Making Worm Compost Tea

Compost tea is not just the liquid run off from worm castings. It has to be ‘brewed’ according to the many recipes I found. So I am just starting to learn this black gold alchemy. I will keep you posted on my progress and let my readers see how magical this potion is meant to be. For now here is a list of posts about making worm compost tea.

Sources and Resources

Is Worm Compost Tea Worth the Hype?

A Simple Way to Make Worm Tea

How To Make Worm Compost Tea with Worm Castings

How To Make Worm Castings Tea

Worm Casting Tea

Best Worm Tea

Worm Compost Tea
Uncle Jim’s Worm Farm Worm Compost Tea
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