The substrate for cultivation is specially prepared compost. The mushroom houses
should have the facilities for temperature control and pasteurization. Buildings are
constructed of wood or hollow cement bricks or double walls. The shed is
partitioned into small compartments and provided with trays. Environmental
conditions like temperature, relative humidity and ventilation are controlled inside
the shed by installing suitable equipment.
Compost is the substrate in which the mushroom mycelium grows and on which it
produces fruiting bodies. It is the product of a fermentation process brought out by a
number of mesophilic and thermophilic microorganisms that decompose plant
residues and other organic and inorganic matters. The quality of compost influences
the yield of mushroom. Compost prepared out of horse manure and wheat straw is
ideal one. Since these materials are not easily available, many substitutes are
suggested and are in use.
Aim: Methods of compost preparation in cultivation of white button
There are two methods of composting:
1. Long method
2. Short method.
The distinction is based on the time taken for composting and the long method needs
three to four weeks, while the short method requires only 12-15 days, since the
composting process is hastened by pasteurization. In the long method of
composting, pasteurization is avoided, which will make the compost poor in quality
and often gives variable yields.
1. Long Method: The composting is done on a cement floor. It can be done in the
open or under a roof, but sides are to keep open.
2. Short method: The short-term compost involves two phases of operation, Outdoors
composting and steam pasteurization.
Chopped Wheat Straw 1000 kg
Chicken manure 600 kg
Cotton seed meal/ Wheat choker 25 kg/ 70 kg
Urea 14.5 kg
Gypsum 30 kg
Ingredients of compost:
Phase: I Outdoor Composting:
Cotton seed meal and chicken manure are added to wheat straw and
stacked after adding sufficient water to completely wet the same. The stack
can be 3.3 X 2.5 X 1 m size. Turnings are given on the 2,4,6 and 8 th days.
The pH to be adjusted to 8.5 and the compost filled into trays for
Phase: II Steam Pasteurization
Stream or dry heat is introduced to establish an aerobic fermentation and
the temperature maintained between 52 - 60 °C inside the compost. Usually
it is done in a room well insulated where the trays are properly kept and
after this all ventilators are closed and steam is introduced to raise the
temperature to 52-54 °C for four hr and afterwards fresh air is introduced
and steam supply cut off.
Difference between long method of compost and short
method of composts for button mushroom
Properties Short Method Long Method
Days required for compost Preparation 16 to 20 28 to 30
Selectivity Complete Partial
Average yield (Kilo/ 100 kilo compost) 18 to 25 % 10 – 15 %
Effect on environment Less polluting Polluting
Average compost production / ton of
2.0-2.5 tons 1.75-2.0 tons
Average final N % in Compost 2.0-2.2 1.75-2.0
Infrastructure required for 20 tons
Covered composting yard (60 x
40 ft) + 1 tunnel (36 x 9 x 12 ft)
yard (60 x 40 ft.)
Man days required for 20 tons compost
Power requirement for 20 tons output
700-900 KW Nil
Compost handling equipments required
(Large farm) (> 500TPA)
Turner, filling line, hopper