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The Corroboree


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Showing content with the highest reputation since 30/10/20 in Posts

  1. 7 points
    Hey all, It's been a real long time since i've posted on the forums here. My journey into plants basically started here so I figured this is a good place to announce I now run my own nursery. We started as The Cactus Orgy just selling plants at EGA conferences and have now rebranded to a less confronting name. We're called Whomping WIllow Nursery. We specialise in growing cacti, Acacia, and a range of other rare plants. We are currently selling plants on ebay, as well as small wholesale lines. I'm sure you understand this probably isnt the place to announce our retailers. Much love to Torsten, Ferret, EG, Darklight, RonnySimulacrum, Interbeing, Apothecary, Niggles, Mu, Kanje and Ampoule for inspiring me over the years. Thanks all, and happy gardening. Prier.
  2. 6 points
    Hi everyone, I'm planning on moving and unfortunately need to part with my lovely plants... I've got a few acacia varieties (about 1.5m+ tall) to give away: 1. 1x Acacia Floribunda 2. 1x Acacia Obtusifolia 3. 1x Acacia Acuminata (Narrow phyllode variety) 4. 1x Acacia Confusa 5. 1x Acacia Acuminata (Broad phyllode variety) 6. 1x Acacia Victoriae (bramble wattle) - this one is smaller, like 0.5m tall See below attached pics for what they look like - I can also PM more pics if you'd like. Pick up south-west Sydney region. You'll need a large car, similar in size to a ute or a van for pickup. Cheers!
  3. 4 points
    Wow, a whole week? That's scandalous!! Let me drop everything just to make sure you are not inconvenienced Karen.
  4. 4 points
    This is a super thread, I've been enjoying reading the entries over the years and participated in, and great story lostinthebush to start your corroboree career, ripper! It just happens I wrote a story along these lines on an FB page I started for my garden. There's a bunch of photos that go with it, but I'll just paste the text here as importing the photos over is a huge job as each one would have to be resized. I'm not too keen to link to FB from here (it's good this site has kept independence from there), but you can easily find the page by googling "Micromegas' Secret Garden" if you're interested. But here is the story, on point I think, if you read though it you may find items that connect with your own personal experiences. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Auspicium Ex Avibus: 50 bird species in the Secret Garden *15 minute read, this will be of interest to not only the typical "twitcher" but anyone who ever received a "message", an omen, from a bird. * There was a time in my psychonautic heyday, now passed, that I was unusually interconnected with birds. I used to have well-developed relationships with a number of species and some key species in particular. At first it was all in the general sense. For several years my thoughts would strangely "synchronize" with external bird behaviour whenever I was outdoors. It started the morning after ayahuasca sessions in the Amazon around 2006: choruses of birds, caciques and orioles, in the forest down river from Iquitos seemed to sing of revelations and "healings". It was pretty incredible at the time and continued on when I came back to Australia. This one can be chalked down to wishful thinking. The birds would *probably* have been singing had I been there, or not. In this sense, one can project one's mind outside oneself, into the environment, and find all sorts of agreeances there, we do this all the time. A general interpretation can therefore be given via "psychologism", along the lines of, as mythologist Levi-Strauss has pointed out, that birds are the most obvious and accessible analogue for human societies. We can easily project onto them, and find in their avian actions, an inversion of our own human communities, fears, hopes, dreams, and behaviours: “Birds… can be permitted to resemble men for the very reason that they are so different. They are feathered, winged, oviparous, and they are also physically separated from human society by the element in which it is their privilege to move. As a result of this fact, they form a community which is independent of our own, but, precisely because of this independence, appears to us like another society, homologous to that in which we live: birds love freedom; they build themselves homes in which they live a family life and nurture their young; they often engage in social relations with other members of their species; and they communicate with them by acoustic means recalling articulated language. Consequently everything objective conspires to make us think of the bird world as a metaphorical human society: is it not after all literally parallel to it on another level?” (Levi-Strauss, The Savage Mind, 1962) So birds got worked into global mythology as a fundamental basic operation of thinking at the dawn of human consciousness, although there is more to the role of birds in mythology than this psychological reduction can explain. But that is tangent for another day! Instead, this entry is about "AUSPICIUM EX AVIBUS" - divining from birds. At a certain point, for me, the general awareness of bird activity turned into bird-correspondence that seemed, extremely, statistically unlikely. Via the operation of the Huachuma Mesada (san pedro ritual) that I had learned (from don Howard Lawler, see "an Ode to El Nino" entry in the gallery: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/...), I became able to "call" birds at certain times and days in ways that seemed statistically improbable. As this went on, I developed strong relationships with certain species. In a different phase of my life I used to roam through bushland in all sorts of out-of-the-way places, or in my own garden, carrying with me a wooden stake, with two lovers entwined in carving and with a depression on top, from which I would nasally imbibe liquid tobacco - a process known in Peru as the "singada". I would give singada "to the birds". I did this thousands of times, probably, the singada. I used to relate to places and birds in this way, walking around, doing singada, sympathetically "raising energy". In this process, and then over into my "normal" life, many small, and some huge, genuinely remarkable instances, of bird "synchronicity" occurred for me over about a decade. When I transitioned to land management as a career and calmed down a bit, the birds continued to "speak" to me. I would read their behaviour - especially of my key species - to know where I was at in my life, to assist in making decisions, and so on. I checked my mental state and made decisions - often major ones like buying a car or a house or changing jobs! - by watching birds. A bit crazy, right? It certainly seems so, in retrospect! Over time I settled down. The "path" became hard, the signals and the general information I was receiving via the shamanic learning process became steadily more abstruse and cognitively and emotionally restrictive. This is not an indictment on shamanism; it merely reflects my own personal process, personal life experiences, and perhaps something about the problematic intersection of western neuroses with native traditions. At a certain point, I switched to a journey of rationalisation or logical deduction. This page is evidence of that shift. I entered the world of theory. I started to ask objective, theoretical, historical questions about my introspective, subjective experiences: what does it mean to read omens from birds? Why are birds so important in mythology? Why and how did birds appear to read my innermost thoughts and feelings? WHAT IS IT ABOUT BIRDS! As my "shamanic" intensity declined and my "theory" developed (perhaps eventually to be fused into one, one day), my garden ascended, and new bird species popped up everywhere. That is where this story begins: fifty species in the Secret Garden. * I have neglected the birds of late. I haven't made a post about them, nor updated my species list - the first folder ever in the gallery - for some time. I have found six new species since August 1 and haven't bothered to post them up. That does not perhaps AUGUR well! But, in truth, I started the SG page to keep track of the birds: to AUGUR and take my AUSPICES from them, in a less intense way than I did so previously! No more tobacco juice up the nose! So one might say that my prior fascination with the divination and reading of signs from birds, their synchronicity with my thoughts, has been transferred into a preoccupation with gardening a home for them, and understanding the THEORY of bird-watching, not merely in the standard sense, “twitching”, but in the "auspicious" sense. And, in this respect, this week I reached a milestone: 50 bird species photographed in Micromegas’ Secret Garden, where the cardinal rule is that the photograph will be taken with both feet inside the property. In the entry prior to this, you can see the six new species, and I think there's about ten more I can get; and in this entry i've placed some bird activity over the last few months. Fifty species AUGURS well and even though the 50th species was, ironically, the common garden sparrow, the fact that the sparrow has been so hard to photograph when it was once the dominant bird means this is an AUSPICIOUS OCCASION. What does it mean, these words in relation to birds - AUGUR and AUSPICIOUS? The answer begins at the founding of Rome, c.750 BCE (BCE = Before Common Era. For the pedantic, BC/AD is going out of fashion). The twin brothers, Romulus and Remus, were wandering about near the place of their birth, Alba Longo, a city-state in the west central region of the Italian Peninsula (there are many primary sources of the Romulus and Remus myth – I have paraphrased from Wiki “Romulus and Remus”). The children of the vestal virgin (priestess of the goddess Vesta), Rhea Silvia – the pregnancy is variously explained – herself daughter of the former King Numitor, the two twins were a threat to the rule of King Amulius of Alba, their grand-uncle (that is, brother to Numitor and uncle to Rhea), who had earlier deposed his brother from the throne. As such, Romulus and Remus are exiled by Amulius from the kingdom, abandoned to die. They are saved by a river god, Tibernius, of the Tiber River, and later and most famously, suckled in a cave by a she-wolf to adolescence, an episode frequently depicted in Roman and Renaissance art (see, e.g., the Capitoline Wolf c.1100 CE). They become shepherds, ignorant of their kingly heritage, but as natural leaders garnered widespread community support in the ongoing strife between Numitor and Amulius over the kingdom of Alba. Remus is captured by King Amulius and Romulus organizes to set him free. In the process they learn their royal parentage, and join up with their grandfather to restore him to kingship. Having dispatched Amulius and restored Numitor as King of Alba, the twin brothers, on the back of their community support, set out to found a city of their own. This city is Rome. They wander about in the area of the “seven hills” and disagree over which hill to build on: Romulus preferred the Palatine Hill, above the Lupercal, the cave of the she-wolf; Remus preferred the Aventine Hill. Unable to settle the dispute they decide TO WATCH THE BIRDS to ascertain the approval of the gods. They have a CONTEST OF AUGURY VIA AUSPICIUM: Remus first saw six "auspicious birds" in favour of Aventine Hill but, soon thereafter, Romulus saw twelve, and claimed a victory for Palatine Hill, where the most ancient part of Rome now stands. These two brothers, as such, were both AUGURS – diviners - and they practiced AUSPICIUM – divining from birds (we’ll unpack this in a moment). Ennius, in his second century BCE poem “Annales”, describes the scene of the founding of Rome: "So now the people, fearful, looked for signs To know whose prize the mighty realm would be. Meantime the fading sun into the shades Of night withdrew and then the shining dawn Shot forth its rays. 'Twas then an augury, The best of all, appeared on high — a bird That on the left did fly. And, as the sun Its golden orb upraised, twelve sacred birds Flew down from heaven and betook themselves To stations set apart for goodly signs. Then Romulus perceived that he had gained A throne whose source and proper was augury." Subsequently, believing in his triumph in the debate and tired of arguing about it, Romulus dispatched (murdered) his brother with a flying spade (or one of his supporters did)! Yikes! After giving his brother full funerary rites with some regret over the murder, Romulus founded the city of Rome on Palatine Hill, reigned for a long time as its first king, and created many of its lasting institutions in government, the military, and religion. That's all because of the birds. * Now the story of Romulus and Remus is fascinating in its own right. Although the historical accuracy of the founding of Rome by Romulus c. 750 BCE is questionable – although some scholars believe it has a factual basis – what it does indicate is the transfer of cognition away from “myth”, proper, of the Greeks and earlier the Near East, toward “history” as we understand it today. The story of Romulus and Remus, while containing mythic aspects - including reminiscences of a proto-Indo-European pair of mythical twin gods that appears from the Balkans across to India (i.e. the "Divine Twin" theme) - is also a historical foundational narrative: the polytheistic pantheon is fading into the background of the "human age". So, Romulus and Remus are complicit, in the founding of Rome, of something approaching modern "historical" forms of understanding. Except, that is, for the birds! That’s what I want to talk about now. In the story of R & R, when the brothers settle their dispute with divination, the six and twelve birds they both see are vultures, and what the brothers are doing is “AUGURING VIA AUSPICIUM”: “Everyone knows that Rome was founded after an auspicium: Romulus, after having a vision of twelve vultures, was chosen by the gods as king and founder of the city. Thus, he was the first augur in Roman tradition” (Yves Bonnefoy ed. “Roman and European Mythologies”, 1992, p.115). This function of inaugurating places by watching birds was, indeed, a common undertaking in early Rome from Romulus onward - somewhat like me making decisions based on bird sightings in my psychonaut heyday - as is indicated, indeed, in the word inAUGURate! (One will note here the similarity with the foundation myth of the Aztecs, who were guided by Huitzilopochtli, the "Left-handed Hummingbird", to the central valley of Mexico. Here, at Lake Texcoco they saw an eagle holding a rattlesnake in its talons, perched on a nopal - opuntia - cactus. This fulfilled a prophecy for the Aztecs and they built the city Tenochtitlan on a manmade island, now the centre of Mexico City – because of the bird sitting on a cactus! So, although the words are from Latin and the story of R & R is eurocentric, clearly, reading of bird omens was a global phenomenon, explainable in part by the insight from Levi-Struass, above.) To explain more precisely, the first word of importance here, “augur”, is from the Latin root *augus, “full of mystic force”, and from this is derived the word “augurium”, a “sign of supernatural manifestation”, and the “augur” is the person who reads the signs – a religious official, or diviner, if you will. So today we say “it augurs well”, or it doesn’t. That’s all from this Roman period, from the Latin *augus. (If you were tempted, as I was, to make a link between "augur" and "auger", you know, that corkscrew type device used to bore holes for fenceposts etc. on account of being “full of force” we were both wrong. “Auger” the hole-driller is from Old English “nafogar”, something like “pointed piercer” – but a connection would have been cool!) Right, so “Augur” is a person who reads divine signs of the gods to plan activities, like I was once doing. R & R were augurs too, and Romulus the more successful; Remus got foisted with a spade for his paltry count of only six vultures! But this “Auspicium” is what’s really cool. We use this word today, “it’s auspicious”, we say – “conducive to success” – inauspicious, and so on. Well this word comes from WATCHING BIRDS! Romulus and Remus were AUGURS DOING AUSPICIUM: watching birds for divine signs. Here “auspicium” is a derivation from the Latin “auspex”, itself a compound from “specere” – “to look at” – and “avis” – “bird”. So auspex is, literally, “bird seer” and “auspice” denoted, originally, the practice of observing birds to discover omens, that is, to ascertain the approval or disapproval of the gods. So today we say “that’s auspicious” – but remember, when we say that, although we have forgotten the etymology, historically IT’S ALL ABOUT THE BIRDS! Now, the auspicium can be conducted “EX AVIBUS”, “from the birds”, in one of two ways. Through the “Oscines” which gave their auspices through song; and through the “Alites” which gave auspices by flight. In the first class the Romans placed ravens (corvus) and crows (cornix), owls (noctua) and hens (gallina); the second the higher flying birds: eagles (aquila), vultures (vultur) and so on (see https://contentcatnip.com/.../ancient-word-of-the-day.../ and Wiki ‘Augury’, and Cicero, below) (presumably there was a longer list for each category, lost to antiquity). I’m thick headed and don't listen well as a rule, so I took most of my auspices in my “heyday” from the Alites – I was always attracted to high-flying birds, but found differentiating bird sounds somewhat difficult. (Auspices could also be read Ex quadrupedibus, from “four-footed animals”, but these were usually private augurs and were not formalised in Rome as bird omens were.) So that is the general gist of “Augur” and “Auspice”, ex avibus, “from the birds”. Writing in 44 BCE, the Roman statesman and “academic sceptic” (Wiki) Marcus Tullius Cicero (106-43 BCE) had words to say about this widespread and important divinatory practice in his “De Deivinatione” (from public source text: http://penelope.uchicago.edu/.../de_Divinatione/1*.html) (P = Paragraph). Around this time, the auspicium practice was in decline, and Cicero can be seen as recording factually an archaic tradition passing slowly out of style (being replaced, e.g. by sacrifice-divination through inspection of the sacrificial victim's [animal] liver, the "haruspices", from "hira", "artery", and "specere", "look at"), while at the same time pondering on its efficacy (P4 “I, too, am in doubt as to the proper judgement to be rendered in regard to divination”). He wrote the following passages on auspicium ex avibus: (P16) "In ancient times scarcely any matter out of the ordinary was undertaken, even in private life, without first consulting the auspices… For just as to day on important occasions we make use of entrails in divining… so in the past resort was usually had to divination by means of birds. And thus it is that by failing to seek out the unpropitious signs we run into awful disasters. For example, Publius Claudius, son of Appius Caecus, and his colleague Lucius Junius, lost very large fleets by going to sea when the auguries were adverse. The same fate befell Agamemnon”. Of the two forms of auspicium: "(P53) The Divine Will accomplishes like results in the case of birds, and causes those known as alites, which give omens by their flight, to fly hither and thither and disappear now here and now there, and causes those known as oscines, which give omens by their cries, to sing now on the left and now on the right. For if every animal moves its body forward, sideways, or backward at will, it bends, twists, extends, and contracts its members as it pleases, and performs these various motions almost mechanically; how much easier it is for such results to be accomplished by a god, whose divine will all things obey!” So that is the story of the “Auspicium Ex Avibus”, finding the divine signs by watching the birds, a technique of deep antiquity crystallized in the founding of Rome, and eventually falling out of favour. As for me, there was a time I learned many things and planned many activities on the basis of omens of birds, AUSPICIUM EX AVIBUS, and particularly “Alites”, birds in flight. This is not unusual in a historical sense. Says Cicero (P1): “I am aware of no people, however refined and learned or however savage and ignorant, which does not think that signs are given of future events… [and who do not] think that the future is declared by the songs and flights of birds, which they regard as most infallible signs”. But now I am more like the sceptic Cicero himself: “I, too, am in doubt as to the proper judgement to be rendered in regard to divination”. I'm on the fence and don’t trouble with a final answer over the possibility of "divination", or take it to heart, in the way I may once have done, although the “problem of synchronicity” maintains a particular philosophical hold on me. I don't pass judgment one way or another on reading omens ex avibus but I do, still, always watch the birds!
  5. 3 points
    Welcome. I greet you in the Love and Light. It's come to my attention that I've been distributing imposter Kanna plants. I sold some of these via the SAB forum and a number of members acquired some of my stock at plant meets. The plant I was selling has been botanically identified as Delosperma tradescantoides by another SAB member. So to make things right I kindly ask that anyone who acquired one of these plants to please contact me to arrange full reimbursement or some other appropriate arrangements. Again I'm really sorry about this but I genuinely didn't know I had an imposter and I just want to make things right so the incorrect plant isn't further distributed a Kanna when its not. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact me. Love & Light Infinity
  6. 2 points
    I'm curious if anyone has tried a brew of fresh vine & fresh tree bark? Seems I have plenty on hand of both. withdrawal clinic would be proud of the tree that's grown from his seed
  7. 2 points
    Had been laid up and watched The Boys through back to back. Took a couple episodes to get into... Now awaiting the third season it cracked me up. Probably awaiting the second season of The Witcher more though Utopia.. There is a UK and US spin on this series. Thought the UK characters were filled out much better.. Stay alive Jessica Hyde As an aside watched the movie Danger Close : The Battle of Long Tan, and enjoyed the way it captured Aussies.
  8. 2 points
  9. 2 points
    Yeast isn't filamentous like that. That mycelium doesn't look unusual for H. erinaceous.
  10. 2 points
    Hey @andros88 - do you still have any of these availabel? Floribunda is the one acacia I don't really have in my collection- and that one looks a little more like the wild type (longer, wider phyllodes with fluffier white flowers) than the less active domestic one that has short skinny phyllodes with shorter yellow flowers). Acacia Victoriae looks like an interesting species; not much on it in regards to tryptamines but the Nexus states " Acacia victoriae is also important as chemicals extracted from this plant have been shown to have anti-cancer properties, and current research may lead to these anti-cancer agents being used in future for the treatment of human skin cancer and other malignancies of the gut and glands. Australian pioneers roasted the seeds of Acacia victoriae to use in the making of a coffee substitute I just moved house too (Newtown to Summer Hill) and it took 3 of us most of the day to move everything !!! It was well worth it though as everything is settling into the new place nicely now...got a nice courtyard area that the cacti love, as well as some garden bed with very rich soil (previous tenants grew vegetables in it) which the Caapi is taking to nicely - one side of the courtyard is permanently in shade as well which should suit the Sallys nicely... as well as maybe some Sub mycelium in winter
  11. 2 points
    Check out Mikaela Davis @11:55, is an amazing talent. At times she looks like she doesn't now where Bobs going, i expect neither does he. Regardless, Bobby holds it together in this one. Despite not being a great guitarist or singer he must be commended at surviving the SF scene. Maybe thats why these great muso's are queuing up. Robert Hunters songs are now part of American music tradition imo.
  12. 2 points
    I don't see the connection between mandatory vaccines and the US Election. Which hearing are you talking about? Borders are open now and people are freely moving, apart from some restrictions for areas like Sydney. The Australian government has done nothing but say how the states should be opening up faster, so it's not adding up. Yes, there will probably be digital health records; in a perfect world we would use them for big data analysis to solve a lot of medical problems but you're probably right in that it's more like the data will be used to sell you products. This is long term, not short term though, and you can't resist some.changes. I'm not saying all changes are good changes, but over the last 50 years, how many things that were considered the work of the devil have been? It's pretty much standard for all data to be managed by big IT companies, or would you rather have your data managed by our incompetent governments who can't even keep a simple webpage operational in a lot of cases?
  13. 2 points
    I saw a really bad meme about bad trips on some other media and was inspired to create some "right' ones . feel free to comment, after all these are only memes portraying my opinions and objections with the psychedelic scope
  14. 2 points
    Add water to mushrooms. Strain out mushrooms. Evaporate liquid. Add alcohol to remaining residue. Enjoy tincture. Interesting side discussion more relevant to water than alcohol - using acidic water may make extraction more efficient. Using heated water (<100c) can reduce extraction time but risks reducing potency. Ascorbic acid may protect psilocybin from heat degradation.
  15. 2 points
    All done and dusted. Gotta be quick to catch the prize.
  16. 2 points
  17. 2 points
    Indeed they are gorgeous plants - and I've enjoyed watching them grow! Our confusa did well with no extra care this winter down to 1 degC in Sydney area, it can take quite a beating despite being common to the tropics I've found inoculating them really helps with their overall vigour and strength.
  18. 2 points
    "I could be bounded in a nutshell, and count myself a king of infinite space, were it not that I have bad dreams." - Hamlet
  19. 2 points
    Hey crew, How about a meet on sat 28th of November?
  20. 2 points
    Thanks for sharing such a magical experience, Lost. I get such a thrill hearing of uplifting interactions with birds. Birds have and continue to bring me so much joy and I live in New York where bird life can't compare to what I've experienced downunder. I was reminded by your story of an experience of having a flock of wild turkeys take off about 10m away from me and fly directly over my head, landing about 10m away in the other direction. I almost fell down from not only the sound of their feathers in flight, the beauty of their outspread brown-flecked wings but also the woosh of pure energy that I felt had rained down on me. Super great moment that I will remember as long as this mind still functions.
  21. 1 point
    Im down for any day any time!
  22. 1 point
    Maniac on Netflix is pretty cool, short series with an actual end.
  23. 1 point
  24. 1 point
    #6 maidens Wattle ~3yrs from seed Confusa, acuminata, and longi Phlebophylla received as a ~20cm seedling 18months ago
  25. 1 point
    Hey mycophiles! There seems to be a little confusion about bulk substrates, what goes into them, pasteurising and spawning, so I want to take a moment to write a brief description of the terminology and give an example of how to go about this task. I firmly believe if you are capable of culturing a healthy jar of mushroom mycelium - then you have already done the hardest part. Spawning is easy, and bulk susbtrates can quadruple the amount of fruiting mycelium easily, while supplying valuable moisture/nutrients needed for healthy and prolific fruits. Remember, there are many ways to skin a cat - this isn't by any means gospel, () - always experiment and innovate - that's what makes this hobby so much fun! Ok, firstly, here is an explanation of the various terms - Substrate - Refers to the media used for fruiting. Some example are a Pf style jar, Popcorn, Wild Bird Seed, Rye or a Bulk Substrate (see below). Spawn(ing) - 'Spawn' refers to any colonised media (Pf style jar, Popcorn, Wild Bird Seed, Rye etc.) if it is used for the purpose of colonising a bulk substrate. 'Spawning' is the term used to describe the act of mixing the 'Spawn' with the bulk substrate, in order for it to colonise. Remember, if you are using the media to fruit from, then it is still referred to as the substrate, not spawn! Bulk Substrate - Is a larger volume of media used to spawn to. Pasteurising - This is the process of heating a media to between 71°C and 82°C (160-180°F). Pasteurisation is carried out for a prolonged time (minimum of 1 hour) and is supposed to kill only heat susceptible organisms and their spores, as opposed to sterilisation which works at a temperature of 121°C (250°F) and is supposed to kill all organisms. The beneficial micro - organisms (mainly bacteria) that are left alive when pasteurising, guard the substrate against other contaminants, for instance different moulds, but don't affect the growth of mushroom mycelium. Pasteurisation is used for bulk substrates like straw, dung, composts and wood chips - and casing materials. If you sterilise a bulk substrate you leave it more open to contamination and therefore have to practice sterile techniques when spawning, therefore sterilisation of a bulk substrate isn't recommended! Bulk Substrate Additives For those interested in preparing bulk substrate, there are many recipes and additions you can use that add valuable nutrients, bulk (weight) to the substrate or both. A few examples are - Horse Poo Horse Poo is full of nutrients and beneficial bacteria, holds a lot of moisture and makes an excellent bulk substrate. Horse poo is best if aged and leached of all ammonium (the poo pictured is perfect - basically if it doesn't smell at all it's fine). If you can only obtain fresh horse poo you can leach it yourself by laying it out on a tarp, spraying it down a little with a hose and leaving it in the sun for a week. It can however be a little hard to come by (if you live in the middle of the city and have no car for example) and can be a little labour intensive as it needs to be crumbled up until there is no big clumps left in it. Other manures are viable (eg. cow, sheep), but they lack the fluffy straw like consistency that makes horse manure so ideal, and shouldn't really be considered. Probably the only other manures I would suggest are either Elephant or Kangaroo - if you can get them... Straw Straw is an excellent addition for adding bulk to the substrate, but lacks the moisture holding capabilities and nutrient value needed for ongoing flushes. Coconut Coir Coco Coir is another excellent substrate that is cheap, easy to find, holds a lot of moisture and has a decent stash of nutrients. It can however contain high amounts of salt (though this is easily washed out and doesn't seem to impact mycelium), and be careful as some companies add slow release fertilisers or anti fungal agents (for use in horticulture and hydroponics). Other additions to bulk substrates are things like used coffee grinds, seaweed extracts, worm castings, vegetable oil and I've even heard of someone mixing in a tin of crushed tomatoes - this is where experimentation comes in, and anything you think will be a good nutrient addition to your bulk substrate can be used. A good rule of thumb is if it grows mould on it when left out for a week - it would probably be good to throw in. Bulk Substrate Preparation and Pasteurisation Ok, so you have your ingredients - what do you do with them? Here is a little guide to get you started... You will need - Straw Aged Horse Poo Coco Coir Seaweed Extract (optional) Oven Bags LINK A bucket An esky One or Two large kitchen cooking pots A meat thermometer (any kitchen supply store) In this example, a rough mix of 40/40/20 Straw, Horse Poo and Coir is used, with a splash of Liquid seaweed Extract to prepare a Bulk substrate. -> Firstly, throw the straw, finely crumbled Horse Poo, Coco Coir and half a cap of seaweed extract into a bucket and cover ingredients with hot water - -> Then soak this overnight to soften the straw and allow the straw and coir to soak up some moisture and nutrients from the poo, when done it should look something like this - -> The next day, squeeze handfuls of the substrate mix one at a time until only a few drops of water come out and stuff the mix into your oven bags. Squeeze out all the air and tie 'em up. -> Fill your Cooking Pots with water and, using the meat thermometer, heat them on the stove to around 180F - -> Take your bags of substrate and put them in the esky. Once the water reaches the desired temperature, pour it on top of the bags and put the lid on the esky (the bags will float but this doesnt matter as the esky is insulated and the inside of the esky should heat up to the right temp) - -> Leave this to sit for an hour or more, then pour the water from the esky BACK into the pots - and re-heat it to 180F. Once again, pour this water back on top of the bags and let it sit for at least a further hour. At this point, they should be pasteurised enough - but I always do this a third time just to make sure, and usually leave it overnight in the esky to cool down. The next day you will now have Bags of pasteurised bulk substrate ready to spawn to. Spawning Now that you have your pasteurised bulk substrate ready, for the next part of the process you will need - Colonised grain or Pf style jars Pasteurised Bulk Substrate A tray or container to spawn to (and eventually fruit from) Foil Glad Wrap Micropore tape LINK (Found in the bandage section at any chemist) Alcohol Spray (such as Glen 20 Surface Spray) Paper towel -> Firstly, get your colonised jars ('spawn') and Bags of pasteurised bulk substrate ready, and the containers you are going to spawn to. Wash, dry and spray the trays you are going to spawn to with alcohol spray to sanitise them as best as possible and then dry with a paper towel - -> With washed and gloved hands, dump your pasteurised bulk substrate into your trays, and carefully crumble and mix your spawn through the mix. If you are using PF style jars, just try to crumble them as small as possible - putting the cake in a plastic zip lock style sandwich bag will make this a lot easier. You can do this at a ratio as low as 10%, but the more you use the quicker it will colonise and the less chance you will have of contamination setting in - -> Cover the tray with foil to keep out light. Poke some holes in the foil with a pen and cover these with squares of micropore tape to allow gas exchange but keep out contaminations - -> Put this somewhere warm and dark to colonise, and after a few days it should look something like this - -> You are now ready to case as normal with whatever you choose (eg. 50/50 verm peat). Once you have cased, cover your trays back up with some Glad Wrap and again poke some holes in the top to allow gas exchange, and put somewhere dark to allow the casing layer to start colonising - -> After a few days you should start to see spots of mycelium appearing on the surface of your casing layer, at this point you are ready to take off the glad wrap, give the casing layer a fine misting, put your trays in a fruiting chamber and expose them to fruiting conditions (80-90% humidity, fresh air exchanges and light) - If all goes well, you should hopefully get pins within the next week or two and a healthy flush of mushrooms! *phew* I hope this clears things up and helps people to move on from fruiting using plain cakes and grains, but most importantly - to help people get the most out of their mycelium...