Sustainable Indoor Mushroom Cultivation – Capstone

Exploring Sustainable Indoor Mushroom Cultivation

By Noah

What was the goal?Grain Spawn Mushroom Production Jars

My primary objective was simply to become well acquainted with the nuances of indoor mushroom cultivation. Although the subject always struck me as fascinating in past semesters, I shied away from research knowing full well the wide range of technical knowledge needed to attain a comprehensive understanding of each aspect of production. The Sustainable Farming and Food Systems capstone course provided me with the necessary motivation to delve head-on into the field. After feeling sufficiently knowledgeable and ambitious, I wanted to trial a low-tech, low-budget indoor oyster mushroom (Pleurotus ostreatus) production model using locally-sourced substrate and plastic containers (reusable, as opposed to the more standard polyethylene bags) while further developing the TC3 Farm’s extant mushroom cultures, with the ideal outcome being useful data/cultures/strains.

Why oyster mushrooms?

Oyster mushrooms are uniquely hardy, thus ideal for beginners. They are capable of colonizing a plethora of substrates, including worn-out blue jeans! It should be no surprise that they populate nearly every continent. They routinely prey on nematodes detrimental to more common commercial mushroom varieties and are capable of inhibiting pathogenic bacterial growth. The strain I selected is capable of fruiting at 4.5 °C.

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TC3 Sustainable Farming Student Perspectives – Hannah

This is the latest entry in our series of posts on the TC3 Sustainable Farming and Food Systems Program from the student perspective. TC3 Sustainable Farming students were asked to write about their first semester in the program as a class assignment, and these are the results.

You can see previous posts here: HAILEYMARIACEDRICJUSTIN – INDIGO

TC3 Farm Students Planting Garlic

TC3 Sustainable Farming Student Perspectives – Hannah

This semester in ENVS 115 [Introduction to Soil Science] we as students learned a variety of things. Not just academically or in field work but about ourselves, and how each one of us fits in the agriculture world in some way. On the farm, in and out of the classroom, we learned that everything is a delicate balance between too much and too little and farming is a less than a perfect science.

I came into this class with a farming background thinking I knew a lot, and was not at all surprised to discover that learning never stops and there was so much more to learn. The professors were enthusiastic and optimistic about teaching a new group of students, some with farming backgrounds, others with none. The small class made learning easier, more open and fun. The student group is small enough that we have formed close knit friendships and come to know each other well and yet big enough that we are able to accomplish sizeable tasks and get a lot a work done in the several hours a week that we meet. Perhaps best of all about the envs 115 class is that because it is so small we all have enough respect for each other to pull our own weight and often as one of us finishes our tasks we help the others with their unfinished work.

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TC3 Sustainable Farming Student Perspectives – Indigo

This post continues our series on the perspectives of current students either enrolled in the Sustainable Farming and Food Systems Degree Program at TC3, or taking classes in the program as electives while pursuing a TC3 Degree. We have a great group of students, and hope you enjoy hearing more about what they’ve been doing, and how it is affecting their learning and thinking.

See other other students perspectives here: HAILEYMARIACEDRICJUSTIN

 TC3 Farm Student Perspectives - Indigo

TC3 Sustainable Farming Student Perspectives – Indigo

The great philosopher Confucious once said, “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.”, and I believe there couldn’t be more truth to this statement. Even before high school I worried about pursuing my true passion in life, but I was always unsure. I was unsure what road to take and troubled by the possibility of failing if I did not choose correctly. I knew I loved art and nature, but what fulfilling job could I possibly find out of the two? I gave a shot at photography  after obtaining my first degree but I wasn’t satisfied – I burned for something more. When I stumbled upon the Sustainable Agriculture program at TC3, my mind immediately lit up. While I do love art, I had a feeling that this new program would be right for me. Over the course of just one semester I have found that nothing fills my spirit with more purpose and joy than working with the Earth to create delicious and sustainably grown produce. Like a sponge, I have soaked in the overwhelming amounts of information, but have done so with such excitement I have never felt before.

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TC3 Sustainable Farming Student Stories – Justin

This post continues our series of stories from current TC3 Sustainable Farming Students. The stories are a response to an assignment given in ENVS 115 – Sustainable Farming I: Introduction to Soil Science. You can learn more about the Sustainable Farming and Food Systems Program at TC3 HERE. You can see stories from other students below.


TC3 Sustainable Farming Student Stories - Justin

TC3 Sustainable Farming Student Perspectives – Justin

This class is one of my favorite classes I’ve ever taken. It shows you a whole other side of where your food comes from and it is one of the most rewarding things I’ve ever done. It is a very good feeling to harvest or plant something, which takes time and effort, to see it finished makes you feel great. Harvesting potatoes is something I won’t forget because it’s very physical and time consuming but when your done and all the beds are clear you can look back and see that you actually did something that is noticeable.

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Farm Business Planning Course – Groundswell

Groundswell Center for Local Food and Farming Announces Farm Business Planning Course Groundswell Center for Local Food and Farming will once again be conducting a 10-week Farm Business Planning Course, beginning in January 2016, for those interested in developing an agriculturally-related business concept by working directly with farm business instructors and a team of farmer … Read more

TC3 Farming Students Perspectives – Hailey

This is the third post in a series exploring TC3 Farming students perspectives. Students currently enrolled in the Sustainable Farming and Food Systems Program at TC3 were asked to write a reflection on their first semester in the program as a class assignment. Here is what they said.

You can see other posts by clicking on the following links:



TC3 Farm Students

TC3 Sustainable Farming Student Perspectives – Hailey

This last semester at TC3 as part of the Farm to table/Sustainable Agriculture program has been, I believe, my greatest academic experience thus far. I have learned more in this last semester than I have in any other given year or semester of school. As for background information my name is Hailey and I am from California, I have no background farming but my first experiences gardening started very young and pursued me all of my life. After working on another organic upstate NY farm over the summer I fell in love and decided it was the right path for me. After my first semester in the Farming Program I couldn’t be more excited to begin a career as a farmer in the food system.

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