Oyster Mushrooms/Pleurotus SPP.
Mushrooms have been a great source of nutrients and traditional medicinal food since ancient times, especially in the Eastern Asian countries. In recent times, the consumption of mushroom has increased. A number of research had been carried out on these mushrooms to know more about its health-related benefits. One such is the oyster mushroom (Pleurotus species) which is considered a functional food or nutraceuticals due to their high-quality proteins with essential amino acids, physiologically important polysaccharides and essential fatty acids, vitamins, fibers and many other medicinal properties. Due to the presence of various active ingredients in it, it has been reported to have antidiabetic, antibacterial, anticholesteric, antiarthritic, antioxidant, anticancer anti-inflammation, antihypercholesterolemia, anti-hypertensive, hepato-protective and anti-allergic activities. Also found to be beneficial for eye health and antiviral activities.
(source: Vol.2 Issue-1, SEP 2021, Just Agriculture, Medicinal Properties of Oyster Mushroom)
Oyster mushrooms are beloved the world over for their delicate texture and mild, savory flavor. The mushrooms typically have broad, thin, oyster- or fan-shaped caps and are white, gray, or tan, with gills lining the underside. The caps are sometimes frilly-edged and can be found in clusters of small mushrooms or individually as larger mushrooms. Oyster mushrooms are classified as a wood-decay fungus in that they digest moist wood. As a white-rot fungi they break down the lignin in wood and help in decomposing our dying trees.
This first experiment is to explore shape and examine the 'flush' or the collective formation. By using a variation on grow chambers and jars or containers holding the mycelium, I can better understand environmental conditions like temperature and relative humidity. Such as the use of perlite which is a bright white, porus volcanic glass that looks like small white gravel. A very lightweight mineral, It has millions of microscopic pores, which when it gets damp, allow it to 'breathe' lots of water into the air, making it humid. Mushrooms like humidity when they're fruiting. It is used in terrarium humidification because of it's ability to "wick" moisture into the air.
These mushrooms were grown to be a part of a larger public arts project. The image below shows you how they will be used in the The Gate Project. Details: In The Living Room Laboratory.