Sources for mushroom compost in Chicago?

nfridayMay 11, 2014

Hi- I live in Evanston, which is just North of Chicago, and I am looking for sources of real mushroom compost. I've heard that there is a mushroom farm somewhere near Rolling Meadows on Oakton maybe. Apparently you bring your own bag, and the mushroom compost is $1 a bag. Has anybody here been there? Are there any bags of mushroom compost that are better than what the big box stores have? I know that what most of the big box stores carry is not true mushroom compost. I was at Anton's today, and they had mushroom compost for $4.50 a bag, but I am not sure if it is any better than what I can get at any of the big box stores like Home Depot.

Anybody know of any cheap sources for vermiculite near Evanston too? I've heard that Menards is cheap, but any other stores? Thanks, Nancy

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Hi Nancy,

I'm not sure why anyone would pay for "mushroom compost". It's the stuff left over that even mushrooms can't grow in, Low in nutrients, high in salts, and often contaminated, as a waste product, the mushroom companies have to otherwise pay to get rid of it, (if my memory serves me well, as I am up way past my bedtime.) I have tried it a long time ago, and it did nothing compared to real compost, in fact, it seemed to do more harm than good.


    Bookmark   May 11, 2014 at 4:06AM
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Hi- I was not asking if I should use mushroom compost. I could drive to Wisconsin, where there is an organic mushroom farm, and they charge $1 a bag for their compost, but the bags are prefilled, and are not huge, and plus the farm is 60 miles from where I live. At the community garden that I am at, one of the gardeners made a few trips to River Valley Mushrooms and got some mushrooms and mushroom compost, and the compost was wonderful he said. I live in a condo, and so I do not have lots of room in my community garden to have a huge compost pile, and so I am forced to supplement. The city used to provide free leaf mulch, but they got complaints about odors from some of the people who lived near the composting site, and so they got rid of the composting site about five years ago.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2014 at 3:41PM
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toxcrusadr Clay Soil(Zone 6a - MO)

Contaminated with what? It's just partially decomposed organic matter, steam-sterilized prior to use so only the desired mushrooms grow.

Hope you find the place, did you search the web for mushroom suppliers in the area? Also you could contact your county or state ag extension, they might have a directory of mushroom growers or someone might know the name of the place.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2014 at 11:22AM
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More comedy from a resident stooge (one of two). If I ever get aholt of you, Sir Toxalot, I'm gonna hold you down and give you a nug.

Minister Mackel.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2014 at 1:40PM
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tropical_thought(San Francisco)

The mushroom compost they sell in bags is not really used for growing mushrooms, read the label and you will see what is in there. Always read the label, because I live in CA it won't be the same stuff. It is gimmick, they use by calling it mushroom compost.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2014 at 8:37PM
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toxcrusadr Clay Soil(Zone 6a - MO)

Nice answer there from the DFW (Doubtful Fact Wagon).

    Bookmark   May 13, 2014 at 11:29AM
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