Do Mushrooms Grow Better In Natural Light Or Artificial Light?

Mushrooms cannot perform photosynthesis as they lack chlorophyll. When mushrooms grow in the dark, they are light in color. Light increases the size of the mushroom cap. Mushrooms exposed to sunlight are rich in vitamin D. What type of light is ideal for mushrooms?

Natural and artificial lights help trigger the faster and healthy growth of mushrooms. A fixed schedule of 12 hours is appropriate when using artificial lighting. Blue and red LEDs will give the best results for most varieties.

Fungi do not need light for their growth as they do not photosynthesize. They absorb nutrients from organic matter. Except for spores that travel through air or water, growth is the means of mobility for fungi.

When forest mycelia see sunlight, they know they have reached the surface. Then mycelium knows that now it is the time to produce mushrooms. Fresh air with CO2 levels of less than 1000 ppm also tells it has reached the surface. 

Ensure there is enough fresh air to keep the CO2 levels low when using a humidity tent or fruiting chamber. Increased CO2 levels will result in small caps and long skinny stems. 

To mimic nature, place mushrooms near a window or on a shaded windowsill. Avoid direct sunlight as it will dry out the mushrooms.

The dormant state of a fungus can last for many years until the right conditions arise for it to fruit. Mushroom growers often use fruiting chambers to create and maintain ideal conditions. 

When mushrooms colonize, they need warm, humid conditions with good air circulation. Mycelial growth will be weak if the substrate is too dry or there is poor air exchange.

Mushroom Cultivation
Mushroom Cultivation

Will Mushrooms Thrive Under LED Lights?

Some mushroom types like shiitake, oyster, and lion’s mane thrive with blue LED light. Portobello and button mushrooms prefer the red light. LEDs with a spectrum of 450-470 nm and 630-660 nm are ideal to promote growth. Use 10-20 W per square foot. 

Maintain a 6–12 inch space between the mushrooms and the LED light. If they are too close, the LED can burn your mushrooms or cause them to dry out.

The 12-hour schedule helps make light conditions more natural during the fruiting stage. You can automate turning on and off lights with a mechanical timer. A LED lamp with 6500K strength can mimic the sun for the best results.

You can use LED lights in various stages of mushroom cultivation. They help start pinning and promote even growth. They encourage the development of fruiting bodies as well.

Check and adjust the temperature and humidity levels, as LED lamps can affect them. Make sure there is enough airflow because LEDs can impact it as well.

LEDs save energy and allow you to customize the spectrum. They offer a consistent light output to promote even growth and increased yields.

Once the fruiting stage starts, increase the exposure to light. It will help promote the healthy growth of mushrooms. You can use LED lights during the spawn run to encourage even growth.

Can You Grow Mushrooms In The Light?

As a fungus, mushrooms can grow in the absence of light. But the light will affect their growth and can become crucial when fruiting. Many mushrooms can grow in zero light at all.

Some mushroom types need light to start their pinhead formation. It is vital during the growth phase of the fruiting bodies as well. They need to disperse their spores in the open air. Light becomes a good signal that the fungus is on the soil’s surface.

Twelve hours of light exposure per day is enough when cultivating mushrooms indoors. Fluorescent or LED lights are suitable for a 12-hour lighting schedule. A 100-watt fluorescent lamp can fulfill the indoor light need. Blue LEDs are very effective at increasing yield.

Turn on your grow light once mushroom mycelium has reached complete colonization. See whether it has started to produce fruit. Light can trigger faster and strong growth of mushrooms. Compared to growing mushrooms in total darkness, light makes them healthier.

Cooler temperatures often slow down the colonization process. You can mimic natural conditions to prevent early pinning. Temperatures between 50 0F and 77 0F are optimal for oyster mushroom fruiting.

Read more: Is It Safe To Grow Oyster Mushrooms In My Home? Tips for Beginners!


Do Mushrooms Need UV Light?

UV light can raise the vitamin D levels in mushrooms, turning them into healthier food. Mushrooms contain ergosterol which converts into vitamin D2. They can produce vitamin D in the same way as humans. 

You can expose indoor mushrooms to pulsed UV light after harvesting. It is efficient in this process. It does not create discolorations in mushrooms like constant light.

How Can A Mushroom Appear To Grow Overnight?

Mushrooms grow from a mycelium, which is a network of microscopic hyphae. They do not develop overnight as most people think. Mycelia are growing all the time. A warm, dark, and moist environment can trigger their sudden appearance. It may seem like they grow overnight.

Does Mycelium Grow Faster In The Dark?

Mycelium grows much better and faster in the dark. The darkness facilitates moisture and humidity to stay at a consistent range. The other reason is that mushrooms grow from spores instead of seeds. For growth and reproduction, spores prefer the dark.

Does Mycelium Need Light To Grow?

For indoor growing, mycelium needs at least 2 hours of artificial light. They only need it to progress to the fruiting phase of their growth cycle. Mycelia have photoreceptors that can sense different light spectrums. They can grow inside a bag or substrate block without light.

Can Mycelium Grow Forever?

Once established, a mycelium network can last for many thousands of years. In unspoiled areas with a constant nutrition supply, mycelia can survive in this way. They grow at their hyphal tips until conditions remain favorable for them. They can live dormant for a long time.

Does Mycelium Need CO2 To Grow?

Mushrooms need CO2 to grow mycelium and develop fruiting bodies. As a fungus, mushrooms do not need CO2 for photosynthesis. They take up oxygen and release carbon dioxide. Early in pinning, most varieties need CO2 concentrations in the 1200-1500 ppm range. 

The spawn growth phase prefers 10000-20000 ppm CO2. During colonization, CO2 tolerance is higher in mycelia. Increased CO2 concentration has a positive effect on some species.

Does Mycelium Need Fresh Air?

When CO2 levels are high, mycelium may not produce fruit. In search of lower CO2 concentrations, fruits may stretch and grow long and thin. 

Mushrooms release CO2 when they metabolize. A lack of ventilation allows this CO2 to pool around the mycelium. Healthy produce needs proper air circulation.

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