Almond Portobello Mushroom

Almond Mushroom aka Almond Portobello . Agaricus blazei, Agaricus brasiliensis, Agaricus rufotegulis, Cogumelo do Sol. This cultivar is related to true Portobello and white button but it is not the same.

Almond Portobello smells and tastes like almonds because it contains many of the same unnatural sounding natural compounds such as benzaldehyde, benzoate and benzyl alcohol which are abundant in almonds.

Almond Portobello has a texture similar to common portobello but differs drastically in taste as well as its additional medicinal qualities. We are accustomed to the old addage that anything good for you can’t taste good, but almond portobello is one of the many exceptions to this ‘rule’. It has a pleasant but faint almond aroma and flavor coupled with a reasonable sweetness that makes for a gourmet delight when sauteed or grilled. It can be cooked in the same way you would prepare true portobello mushrooms. 

Medicinal Qualities of Almond PortoBello

This mushroom is believed to modulate the immune system to generate cells that combat abnormal cell growth and tumors. “It was traditionally used to treat many common diseases like atherosclerosis, hepatitis, hyperlipidemia, diabetes, dermatitis and cancer. In vitro and in vivo ABM has shown immunomodulatory and antimutagenic properties, although the biological pathways and chemical substances involved in its pharmacological activities are still not clear.” [1]

Growing Almond Portobello

Mushrooms spores or spawn are extremely tiny, like pollen or fine grains of dust. Unlike seeds of plants, spawn needs nutrients to begin germinating, in nature this could be a log or tree, animal feces, or even natural mulch on the forest floor. The spores will seek and grow only where the environment is suitable. Almond Mushrooms grow best on light decaying organic matter.

Almond Portobello Mushrooms

Almond Mushroom can be grown outdoors on decaying organic material such as compost or even organic mulch. It has been grown on various types of manure that has been well aged / dried. Well dried manure should be slightly moistened once the spawn is sown, but not saturated as the spawn will suffocate.

They will not grow all that well on wood chips or sawdust. That’s not to say they won’t grow at all but myself and others have not had any great level of incredible success. 

If you use sawdust it needs to be amended with grain spawn at a ratio in the ball park of 10 parts sawdust to 1 of grain.

Seed Spawn should be laced into the upper 1/2 foot of compost or mulch in the early spring. It will not grow well, if at all, in cool temperatures having evolved in a balmy South American climate.

Temperatures below 35 degrees F will kill it off. If growing in a cooler environment wait till mid / late spring and if at all possible a cold frame or plastic tunnnel is advisable. Growing indoors is possible but the subtrate it grows on can be quite aromatic in a negative way.

It is compatible with all common garden crops, or at the very least has no known antagonistic relationships with any. 

Harvest in the fall before cool weather sets in. Almond portobello will die off and be useless once temperatures plummet near the mid 30s [F].

Edible Mushrooms that Eat Plastic Could be the answer to the Plastics Dilemma

Plastic eating fungi growing in isolation

We live in a plastic society, one that is currently incapable of ecologically disposing of the plastic waste it produces. We are basically wallowing in our own refuse and our neighbors on this planet, the wildlife and environment are paying the price as well. A newly-discovered mushroom could potentially play a pivotal role in reducing plastic pollution. At Utrecht University in Holland more well known members of the mushroom clan were isolated along with plastic wastes, no other food sources were available to them. They were stored in a climate controlled environment — and lo and behold their precious little fungoid roots consumed the plastic waste and converted it to an edible biomass of mushrooms Full Article