Worm Compost Boosts Mushroom Growth

August 1, 2008 at 10:32 pm Leave a comment

Well if you needed some more proof that worm compost is some of the most rich, most nourishing food for your soil and plants here it is.

Of course the guys who’ve been doing this for awhile it ain’t news at all (grins – imagining Mike Nevin and a whole host of gardeners in Toronto)

The original news release can be found here:


Forterra Environmental Releases Findings of University Study That Worm Castings Increased Mushroom Growth 20%

TORONTO, July 29 /CNW/ – The University of Guelph, in a July 8, 2008
study, concluded that using worm castings as a partial substitute for peat
moss in mushroom production resulted in 20 percent more mushrooms grown per
square meter.
The university’s study was financially supported by Forterra
Environmental Corp. (TSX-V: FTE-V), an emerging leader in the production and
sale of premium organic soil-enrichment products based on worm castings. The
study also found that using worm castings as a top dressing with peat moss can
result in a five percent increase in yield (weight of the mushrooms). A
tradeoff can be made, however, between the number of mushrooms grown per
square meter and yield. Subject to how the growing is managed, including the
frequency of pickings, yield could be further improved by capitalizing on this
increase in mushroom numbers.
The university’s report also said that, “The data suggest the worm
castings may enable the mushrooms to remain on the growing shelf longer
providing a better opportunity for staggered harvesting” and also that the
“data empirically, suggest that solids may increase as a function of an
increase in the amount of worm castings in the casing up to 30 percent.”
Mushrooms are a significant vegetable crop in Canada and the United
States. In 2006, Ontario mushroom farmers produced 61 percent of the mushrooms
grown in Canada or 118 million pounds with a farm-gate value of $172 million.
“This study by the University of Guelph’s agricultural experts is further
third-party confirmation of the value of worm castings as an enrichment
product to produce higher agricultural yields. It should further our marketing
of Forterra’s products to the mushroom-growing industry and should be of
interest to other agricultural sectors,” said Rick Denyes, Forterra’s
President and Chief Operating Officer. “As we continue to ramp up our
production levels of solid and liquid worm castings products, we also are
increasing our marketing and sales efforts.”


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