How To Grow Psilocybin Mushrooms In Your Own Home
Knowing how to grow psilocybin mushrooms is essential if you want to have a reliable and safe supply of psychedelics. If you buy magic mushrooms from someone else, you might be uncertain of the mushroom species, and how long they’ve been kept, which might mean a loss of potency and possible mold.
Psilocybin mushrooms are abundant in nature and one of the most common types of psychedelics. They contain the compounds psilocybin and psilocin. Researchers have been studying psilocybin for its potential to treat depression, end-of-life anxiety, and smoking addiction. Individuals also self-medicate their own conditions with these mushrooms, as well as use them for the purposes of microdosing and mind exploration.
Picking psilocybin mushrooms does bring challenges, though. From picking the wrong species (you don’t want to eat a poisonous variety), as well as considerable time spent looking for them. You might go out hunting for magic mushrooms and end your day empty-handed.
When growing psilocybin mushrooms, however, you can select the species you want, you can grow as much as you need, and you get the satisfaction of having a psychedelic experience from your efforts.
But if you’ve never tried to grow psilocybin mushrooms before, you may be wondering what steps you need to take to ensure success.
This guide provides you with all the details you need to grow magic mushrooms at home, from the equipment you need to tips for avoiding complications.
Here we should emphasize that if psilocybin mushrooms are illegal to cultivate and possess in your country, then you will be taking on a potential legal risk by growing them. For this reason, we do not encourage anyone to grow them. However, since we know people will want to grow magic mushrooms regardless of the law, we want to provide a useful guide on how to grow psilocybin mushrooms for the purposes of harm reduction.
Contents of this article
Growing Magic Mushrooms At Home Is Rising In Popularity
The first thing to note is that there is a trend of people growing magic mushrooms on their own. Some key reasons for this trend include the following.
- More interest in the benefits of magic mushrooms
- Cost-saving potential
- The proliferation of growing guides
- The changing legal landscape, with magic mushrooms being decriminalized in certain cities in the United States
How To Grow Psilocybin Mushrooms
Let’s now explore every step you need to take to successfully grow magic mushrooms. This process will suit beginners: those who have no experience of growing.
All in all, it should take about 4-6 weeks for you to grow magic mushrooms so that they are ready for consumption.
Choosing Your Variety Of Mushroom
Knowing how to grow psilocybin mushrooms starts with deciding what species of mushroom to use. There are many varieties to choose from. There are 180 species that grow in nature, although only some of these will be available as spores — the reproductive cells that can grow into mushrooms — that you can buy. You can also buy varieties of individual species found in nature.
Popular choices are often strains of Psilocybe cubensis, such as the following.
- Red Boy
- McKennaii mushrooms
- Orissa India
- Penis Envy
- Golden Teachers
- PES Amazonian
- PES Hawaii
- Treasure Coast
There are many other species of psilocybin mushrooms that are available as spores, including the below.
- Psilocybe cyanescens
- Psilocybe semilanceata
- The Psilocybe tampanensis
- Psilocybe mexicana
- The Psilocybe azurescens
- Panaeolus cyanescens
These psilocybin mushrooms can differ significantly in potency between strains and species. So choose one that appeals to you and adjust your dose accordingly.
For example, if growing Penis Envy mushrooms, know that these are more potent than a strain like B+ while a species like Psilocybe azurescens has a much higher psilocybin content than Psilocybe cubensis.
The Ingredients And Equipment To Use
You will need a range of ingredients and equipment to grow psilocybin mushrooms at home. But don’t worry, you only need to purchase this set-up once. This purchase will prove much more economical than buying a grow kit or buying magic mushrooms by the gram from a street dealer or Dark Web vendor.
- Spore syringe, 10-12 cc. This will contain your magic mushroom spores. You use it to “sow” the spores into a substrate. (Here we should note that some growers have reported issues with spore syringes, like contamination, containing the wrong strain, and even containing nothing but water. Make sure you obtain your spore syringe from a reputable supplier.)
- Organic brown rice flour
- Vermiculite, medium/fine
- Drinking water
- 12 shoulderless half-pint jars with lids
- Hammer and small nail
- Measuring cup
- Mixing bowl
- Heavy-duty tin foil
- Large cooking pot with a tight lid for steaming
- Small towel
- Micropore tape
- Clear plastic storage box, 50-115L
- Drill with a quarter-inch drill bit
- Mist spray bottle
- Rubbing alcohol
- Butane/propane torch lighter
- Surface disinfectant
- Air sanitizer
- Sterilized latex gloves, surgical mask, still air or glove box (all optional)
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A Step-By-Step Guide On How To Grow Psilocybin Mushrooms
Step 1: Preparation
- Prepare Your Jars. With the hammer and nail, both of which you have disinfected with alcohol, make four holes in each of the lids, evenly spaced around their circumference.
- Prepare Your Substrate. For each jar, combine two-thirds of a cup of vermiculite and one-quarter of a cup of water in the mixing bowl. Drain the excess water using a disinfected strainer. Then add one-quarter of a cup of brown rice per half-pint jar to the bowl, combining it with the moist vermiculite.
- Fill Your Jars. Fill the jars, leaving half an inch of space below the rims, but be careful not to pack them too tightly. Then sterilize this top half-inch with rubbing alcohol. After that, top off your jars with a layer of dry vermiculite (this will insulate the substrate from contaminants).
- Steam Sterilize. Tightly screw on the lids. Then cover the jars with tin foil. Make sure to secure the edges of the foil around the sides of the jars. This will prevent water and condensation from getting through the holes. Next, place the small towel into your large cooking pot, placing the jars on top and ensuring they don’t touch the base of the pot. After this, add tap water until it reaches halfway up the sides of the jars, and then bring the water to a slow boil, making sure the jars stay upright. Finally, place the tight-fitting lid on the pot and leave it to steam for 75-90 minutes.
- Allow to Cool. After you’ve finished steaming, leave the foil-covered jars in the pot to cool off for several hours or overnight. They need to be at room temperature before you proceed with the next step.
Step 2: Inoculation
- Sanitize And Prepare The Syringe. Use a lighter to heat the length of your syringe’s needle, doing so until it glows red hot. Wait for the needle to cool, then wipe it with alcohol, being careful not to touch it with your hands. Then pull back the plunger a little and shake the syringe (this will evenly distribute the psilocybin mushroom spores). If you need to assemble the syringe before using it, you want to avoid contamination. You can do this by using sterilized latex gloves, a surgical mask, and (ideally) assembling the syringe inside a disinfected still air box or glove box.
- Inject the Spores: Remove the foil from the first of the jars and insert the syringe through one of the holes, as far as it can go. Then, with the needle touching the side of the jar, inject about one-quarter cc of the spore solution. Repeat this for the other three holes, wiping the needle with alcohol in between each injection. Next, cover the holes with micropore tape and set the jar aside, leaving the foil off. Repeat this inoculation process for the remaining jars, sterilizing the needle with the lighter and alcohol between each one.
Step 3: Colonization
- Wait For The Mycelium To Appear. Place the inoculated jars somewhere clean, away from direct sunlight, and at room temperature. White, fluffy-looking mycelium should start to appear between seven and 14 days, spreading outward from the inoculation sites. (At this point, you want to keep an eye out for any signs of contamination, such as strange colors and smells. If you spot any of these signs, you want to dispose of the jars immediately. If you’re unsure, always err on the side of caution, as some contaminants can be deadly if you consume them.)
- Consolidate. After three to four weeks, you should have successfully colonized jars. Leave for another seven days so that the mycelium can strengthen its hold on the substrate.
Step 4: Preparing The Grow Chamber
- Make A Shotgun Fruiting Chamber. Take the plastic storage container and drill quarter-inch holes roughly two inches apart all over the sides, base, and lid. To make sure the container doesn’t crack during this step, drill the holes from the inside out into a block of wood. Then, place the box over four stable objects, arranged at the corners so that air can flow underneath. It can be helpful to cover the underneath of the box as well to protect it from moisture leakage.
- Add Perlite. Place the perlite into a strainer, then run it under the cold tap to soak. Let it drain until it stops dripping, then spread the perlite over the base of your grow chamber. Repeat this process until you have a layer of perlite that is about 4-5 inches deep.
Step 5: Fruiting
- “Birth” The Colonized Substrates (Or “Cakes”). Open the jars and remove the dry vermiculite layer in each, being careful not to damage the substrates (or ‘cakes’) in the process. Then, upend each of the jars and tap them down onto a disinfected surface, releasing the cakes intact.
- Dunk The Cakes. Rinse the cakes, one at a time, under a cold tap. This will remove any loose vermiculite. Fill the cooking pot with tepid water and then place the cakes inside. Submerge them just beneath the surface of the water, using perhaps another pot or another similarly heavy item. Next, leave the pot at room temperature for up to 24 hours. This will provide enough time for the cakes to rehydrate.
- Roll The Cakes. Remove the cakes from the water and then place them on a disinfected surface. Next, fill the mixing bowl with dry vermiculite. After this, roll the cakes, one by one, in the mixing bowl, so that they are fully coated in the vermiculite.
- Transfer Cakes To Grow Chamber. Cut out a tin foil square for each cake, large enough for them to sit on, so that they don’t touch the perlite in the grow chamber. Space the foil squares evenly inside the chamber, placing the cakes on top, and then misting the chamber with the spray bottle. Make sure to fan the chamber with the lid before closing it.
- Optimize And Monitor Grow Chamber. During this stage, you want to mist the chamber about four times a day in order to maintain the humidity. Don’t soak the cakes with water, however. Also, fan the chamber with the lid up to six times a day, especially after misting, as this will help to increase airflow. Exposing the mycelium to ambient lighting during the day is sufficient for the mushrooms to grow.
Step 6: Harvesting
- Watch For Fruits. The mushrooms (fruits) will appear first as tiny white bumps and then sprout into “pins”. After 5-12 days, the mushrooms will then be ready to harvest.
- Pick Your Mushrooms. When ready, cut the mushrooms close to the cake. Don’t wait for them to reach the end of their growth, as psilocybin mushrooms lose potency as they mature.
How To Store Psilocybin Mushrooms
Psilocybin mushrooms tend to go off within a few weeks when stored in the fridge. So, if you have interest in the long-term storage of mushrooms, you first want to dry them.
The best way to dry them is to leave them out on a sheet of paper for a few days, ideally with a fan blowing on them. The mushrooms will be fully dried when there is no more moisture in the body of the mushroom. The weight and size of the mushrooms will decrease substantially.
Once dried, your psilocybin mushrooms still stay potent for two to three years if stored in a cool, dark, dry place. If kept in the freezer, they’ll last indefinitely.
Now that you understand how to grow psilocybin mushrooms, follow the steps above for the best results.