Magic Mushroom, also known as psychedelic mushrooms, shrooms, mush, and psilocybin mushrooms is nothing but a group of fungi that has psilocybin, psilocin, and baeocystin. These compounds are the reason behind hallucinogenic effects in our brain. These mushrooms are believed to have a long history of use in spiritual and religious rituals. Having said that, magic mushrooms also have therapeutic value, which helps in treating a lot of diseases and disorders such as cluster headaches, obsessive-compulsive disorders, anxiety, depression, and addiction.
In a lot of countries, magic mushrooms are considered illegal, especially in the United States of America it is categorized as a Schedule I controlled substance. However, lately, the FDA and DEA have amended the rules and allowed the mush in small quantity in medical and psychiatric use with a highly controlled setting. Typically, a 0.2 to 0.5 grams range is good enough to feel the effects of the mushroom, but it varies from person to person. A moderate dose taken orally can produce a trip which will last for 3 to 6 hours. How does it work? The psilocybin compound contacts with serotonin receptors in the brain which thereby affects the sensory experiences.
Growing Magic Mushroom
With magic mushrooms being legalized in few parts of the country, there have been a lot of conversations regarding the correct time to harvest the plant. The various magic mushroom grows kits are available in the market and online as well; make your pick and grow! The best time to understand when to harvest the mushrooms is when the veil underneath the cap of the mushroom breaks open, uncovering the gills.
Usually, the veil breaks in about 5-12 days, so avoid waiting for too long. This indicates that the mushroom will release the spores from the gills for the reproduction to begin. Once the spores are released, it will cover the remaining ones and the substrate below them. Once the spores are released, make sure to wash your hands and keep it sterile, or best use rubber gloves before harvesting the shrooms to avoid any kind of contamination.
Procedure for Harvesting Magic Mushrooms
The perfect time to harvest your magic mushrooms is when the veil under the mushrooms caps break. It does not necessarily mean that smaller ones are more potent than large ones. It is just that unbroken or smaller ones are more potent when it comes to weight as compared to broken or bigger fruits life. In fact, psilocybin mushrooms will stop producing active psilocybin after their veil breaks and will go into the process of cell expansion instead of cell new creation.
The technique of harvesting the mushrooms is simple, just grab it by the base and twist it in a counterclockwise motion. Make sure you do it with gentle hands, as pulling the mushroom with force can harm the mycelium. Once you have harvested the mushroom, do not wash it by any chance, just lightly brush off any vermiculite or substrate left on the mushroom. The maturing of the shrooms depends on the strain variation, humidity, temperature, and fresh air.
Sometimes it can be a pain to take care of all the mushrooms together, as they grow in very close proximity to each other. To ease the process, you can pick up the mushrooms that seem big enough and allow the rest of them to mature for a few more days. While doing this, keep a close eye on your grow kit, as the mushrooms tend to grow quickly in this stage of the growth. Ideally, one night will be enough for spores to come out.
It is important to be able to provide what your magic mushrooms need in terms of environmental requirements for your magic mushrooms to survive. Of course, the final result will be more rewarding if you do the step-by-step procedures the right way.
Drying and Storing of Harvested Magic Mushrooms
The shrooms are at their strongest when its first picked, and it is said that the longer you keep them, there is a better chance for the active psilocybe and psilocybin to become oxidized and lose their potency.
Therefore, it is extremely important to dry them so that they last much longer. Make sure the shrooms are given a good amount of air dry. Keep a blowing fan over them until the moisture in it is visibly gone. After drying, it needs to be kept on a wire rack, as this helps the air to circulate in and around them.
Even the slightest amount of moisture can rot your mushrooms, so another option of drying them is by using an oven. Be mindful of not using high heat, as it may damage the compounds. This method is not a reliable one though. Another option is to dry them with a food dehydrator for long-term storage purpose. It usually takes around 30-48 hours of drying period to completely remove the moisture and is very effective as well.
Coming to the storing part, there are many ways in which you can store the dried mushrooms that maintain its longevity. Please note, the shrooms need to be stored in an airtight container and should be kept in a dark spot. Mason jars are perfect to store dried mushrooms. To be extra careful, pack the shrooms in a ziplock bag, squeezing out all the oxygen, and put it into the airtight jar. You can also keep some space in your freezer to store this bagful of awesomeness! This is the best method to keep the mushrooms safe for long-term usage. Just make sure you dry the mushrooms completely before opting for this method.
Harvesting magic mushrooms take time and patience, and there will be always a finite supply of it. Hence, keep your usage at a reasonable level. When the mushroom cap veil breaks, then it’s time to harvest your magic mushroom. Follow the procedure and technique, and you will see great results in the quality as well as the number of your shrooms. Enjoy growing your magic mushrooms and enjoy the fruits of your hard work!