This is a review of the North Spore mushroom growing kit. When the North Spore company contacted me to see if I was interested in reviewing their kit, I jumped at the chance. I’ve always wanted to grow mushrooms but was very intimidated by them. I didn’t know much about growing mushrooms. Thanks to the North Spore kit, not only was I able to easily grow mushrooms, but I learned a lot, too.
Here is my review of the North Spore mushroom growing kit.
North Spore Mushroom Growing Kit Review
North Spore, based in Maine, USA, provides complete kits and supplies to grow mushrooms. The company offers complete growing kits, like the one sent to me for this review, and supplies if you’d like to grow your own from scratch.
Everything you need to grow the mushrooms is included in the kit.
Disclaimers and Disclosures
Disclosure of Sponsored Post: I received two free mushroom growing kits from North Spore. I tested one of the two kits. Both kits enable the owner to grow lion’s mane mushrooms and the actual kit I grew is pictured in this article.
Disclosure of Amazon Affiliate Links: Second, this article contains affiliate links. Home Garden Joy participates in the Amazon affiliate program. We earn a commission from the sale of products purchased when you click an affiliate link. This does not affect your price in any way. Thank you for supporting Home Garden Joy.
North Spore Mushroom Growing Kit Review
Now, on to my review of the North Spore mushroom growing kit!
Everything You Need to Grow Mushrooms Is in One Kit
First, the kit arrived with great packaging. The kit is self-contained, meaning everything you need to grow at least one batch of the mushrooms is included in the box.
Simple Instructions Very Easy to Follow
After I took the kit out of the mailing box, I found the instructions on the side panel. The instructions were simple and easy to follow. There’s a perforated panel on the long side of the box. You just use a knife, scissors, or x-act blade to cut the perforated panel, then open it.
The block inside the cardboard box is already inoculated with mycelium. Mycelium consists of special thread-like structures called hyphae. Like a plant’s roots, this where the mushrooms take in nourishment, anchor themselves, grow and reproduce.
How to Grow Your North Spore Mushroom Kit
Once the growing kit is open, you use a knife to cut an X across a plastic window. Then, pull back the plastic. The kit includes a small misting bottle. Fill the bottle with tap water and spray the block. Place the mushroom growing block in a sunny, room temperature or slightly warmer room. Mist it daily, twice or more times per day.
Mushroom Growing Kits Grow Slowly (at First)
One of the interesting things about my North Spore mushroom growing kit was that it starts off slowly. This is natural – I looked at several videos online from both the company and individuals who also grow mushrooms and everyone says they do start off slowly.
After a few days, a small bump appeared on the block of growing medium. I was excited to see signs of life!
My North Spore Kit: Progress in Pictures
Day 1: Unpacking on October 10. I placed the kit in my plant room, which receives eastern light. It’s a little on the cool side, but not bad. You can see that the kit is self contained, with everything you need to grow the mushrooms inside. Plus the little spray mister bottle laying on the top of the bookcase makes it easy to keep your kit watered.
Day 3: October 13: Signs of Life – a Little Mushroom Has Started!
I was so excited to see the little mushroom bud growing on the kit. It is a bit discolored. My research shows that this is because the plant room was cool. It did not affect the taste of the mushrooms at all later on (you’ll see the same brown discoloration throughout my pictures).
Day 4: October 14: The Kit Grows Rapidly
It’s amazing how once the mushrooms start growing, they grow quickly. Look at the difference one day made. With each passing day, you could practically see the mushrooms growing from hour to hour. It was amazing.
The pink color is also a harmless discoloration from the well water at my house.
October 17 and October 18 – A little over a week and exciting new growth
Day 10: October 20. Ready to Harvest
Look at these beautiful mushrooms. I wasn’t sure if they were completely ready or not (this is, after all, my first time growing a North Spore kit) but I decided to harvest them.
October 23 – harvest
This is a close up of the Lion’s Mane mushroom I grew. Isn’t it beautiful?
Cooking the Mushrooms
After harvesting the lion’s mane mushrooms according to the directions on the North Spore YouTube channel, I sliced them and pressed them to get the moisture out. Then I fried them in a pan with garlic powder and olive oil. The taste was like fried tofu or chicken. I added it to a salad. Yummy – with health benefits!
North Spore Kit: Excellent Gift or Home Mushroom Growing Kit
I absolutely loved my North Spore Lion’s Mane Mushroom Kit. North Spore made it very easy to grow the mushrooms. All of my fears evaporated and I wasn’t intimidated anymore! I harvested two batches of mushrooms from one kit. We tried growing a second batch, but Hubby thinks we damaged the block somehow (or I did, anyway) by the way I pulled the lion’s mane mushrooms from the block. We only got a few from the second harvest, but that’s okay. I have another kit to try.
I recommend North Spore’s mushroom growing kits to you. They are a good value for the money, produced great mushrooms, and were easy and fun to grow. I think they would make a great science project for a classroom as well as an easy way to grow your own culinary or medicinal mushrooms.
You can buy the North Spore Kits here: North Spore Mushroom Growing Kit
Growing Mushrooms: Myciculture
The science of growing mushrooms is called mycology, and the cultivation of mushrooms specifically is known as mushroom cultivation or myciculture. Mycology is the branch of biology that focuses on the study of fungi, including their taxonomy, genetics, physiology, ecology, and interactions with other organisms. When it comes to growing mushrooms for food, medicinal purposes, or other applications, individuals engage in practices related to myciculture, which involves understanding the life cycle of mushrooms, the environmental conditions required for their growth, and various cultivation techniques.
Why Grow Mushrooms at Home?
I’ve wanted to grow mushrooms at home for a variety of reasons. First, here is my rural part of Virginia, the supermarkets only sell two types of mushrooms; button and portobello. That’s it. Take it or leave it.
However, there are dozens more varieties of mushrooms for both medicinal and culinary use. As part of my natural health studies, I’ve encountered praise for lion’s mane mushrooms along with reishi and shitake mushrooms. I chose the North Spore lion’s mane mushroom it because of the many beneficial properties I’ve read about attributed to lion’s mane mushrooms.
Health Benefits of Lion’s Mane Mushrooms
Lion’s mane mushroom (Hericium erinaceus) is gaining attention for its potential health benefits. This unique-looking mushroom contains bioactive compounds that may have various positive effects on health.
One notable benefit is its potential to support cognitive function and memory. Some studies suggest that lion’s mane may enhance neuroprotective mechanisms, promoting the growth and maintenance of nerve cells, which could be particularly relevant for brain health and potentially reducing the risk of neurodegenerative diseases.
Additionally, lion’s mane mushrooms may have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, contributing to overall immune system support. While more research is needed to fully understand the extent of these benefits, incorporating lion’s mane mushrooms into a balanced diet could be a tasty and nutritious way to explore their potential positive impact on cognitive and overall health.
As with any supplement or food, you should consult with a healthcare professional before making significant changes, especially if you have existing health conditions or those taking medications.
Thank you to North Spore for providing me with a kit to test.