How to grow grey oyster mushroom (Pleurotus ostreatus) on wheat straw and cardboard mixture.

Pleurotus is an aromatic edible fungus and of which some species constitute a very valuable protein source. The mushroom is easy, fast and less expensive to grow, require less preparation time and production technology compare to other mushroom species. Pleurotus spp. are the best-known lignin degraders  and they could grow versatilely on a wide range of lignocellulosic materials. These are some steps how to grow grey oyster mushroom on wheat straw and cardboard.

Substrate preparation

Wheat straw (S) and cardboard (C) are obtained and prepared into a culture substrate with ratio of 50% wheat straw and 50% cardboard.  We should choose cardboard wastes without visible glue or ink residue.

grey oyster mushroom on wheat straw and cardboard
grey oyster mushroom on wheat straw and cardboard
wheat straw

 The collected lignocellulosic substrates of straw and cardboard are chopped into small pieces (2-4 cm long) and soaked in tap water for overnight. The excess water in the substrates is allowed to runoff until the required moisture level reached.

The substrates are added 5% CaSO4 and 0.2% CaCO3. Wheat bran is used as supplementary substances to increase mushroom yield and to achieve faster mycelial growth. Substrate is supplemented by 10-20% (w/w) of wheat bran, and mixed thoroughly. Water is added to adjust moisture content to 65-70%.

grey oyster mushroom on wheat straw and cardboard

The substrate mixture is filled into polypropylene plastic bags (25x35cm) about 1,5-2kg/bag, and sterilized at 1210C, and 17psi for 90 minutes or applied steam sterilization in 4 hours at 1000C.

grey oyster mushroom on wheat straw and cardboard

Running Spawn

After allowing to cool down to room temperature the substrates are inoculated with spawn (10-15g/bag). These inoculated bags are incubated in a dark room at 24 ± 20C temperature for mycelium growth. Period of spawn run takes approx. 2-3 weeks.

running spawn


The full growth bags are opened or make 2-3 cuts (2cm) on plastic bags. The bags are subjected to the fruiting conditions i.e. exposure to diffused light, watering by daily water spraying (2-3 times per day), good ventilation, adjusting relative humidity to 85- 90% and temperature is maintained around 15 ± 2 0C. The first pin heads are verified after 2 weeks.


The crop was harvested after 2-3 weeks from the timing of pin heads appearance in two consecutive flushes at intervals of 3-4 weeks.

Fruit bodies

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