Evaluation of different sawdust substrates for spawn production of shiitake mushroom [Lentinula edodes (Berk.)]
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Shiitake mushroom is one of the most widely cultivated specialty mushrooms in the world. It is considered as one of the delicious, edible mushrooms which has medicinal properties. Quality spawn production is the key factor in its successful cultivation. More vigorous the spawn, better will be the fruit production. Sawdust is the most popular basic ingredient used for producing spawn for shiitake. However, there is need to evaluate the best sawdust substrate for synthetic log cultivation of shiitake mushroom. In the present study, five locally available sawdust substrates of broad-leaved trees, viz., eucalyptus, mango, mulberry, poplar and tooni were evaluated to produce shiitake spawn following standard procedure. The growth of the spawn was measured in terms of MRR [Mycelial Run Rate (cmday-1)]. Observations revealed that the MRR on eucalyptus substrate formulation was fastest amongall other formulations. Shiitake mushroom required 44 days to complete mycelial growth on eucalyptus followed by 54 days on tooni while all other substrates took more than 60 days for complete growth. The MRR on different substrates ranged from 0.16 to 0.30 cm day-1. The highest MRR was observed in eucalyptus sawdust (0.30 cm day-1) followed by tooni (0.25 cm day-1). There was no significant difference in the MRR of mulberry and poplar when used as sawdust substrates. The lowest MRR was recorded on mango sawdust i.e. 0.16 cm day-1. The higher rate of mycelial running in eucalyptus sawdust may be due to the presence of right proportion of alpha-cellulose, hemi-cellulose, pectin, lignin and suitable C: N ratio.
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