Since we met Raymond Blanc back in August 2014 during the filming of Kew on a Plate, we’ve been helping the gardening team at Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons with oyster mushrooms for their Valle aux Champignons.
This Autumn, the gardening team are running a fantastic programme of gardening courses including Autumn Vegetables, Edible Flowers and Micro Greens, Apples, and Mushrooms (of course).
We ran the first Grow Your Own Mushroom course in August, and the next one is on October 25th. It’s a one day course, taught by Robbie and Jon from Espresso Mushroom Company, and supported by John Driscoll and the Gardening team from Le Manoir, and held on the beautiful site of Le Manoir aux Quat’Saison.
The course is a hands on opportunity to prepare your own mushroom growbags, learning as you go, under the instruction from Espresso Mushroom Company production team, with support from Le Manoir gardening team. You will leave the day equipped with the basic theory behind mushroom cultivation, a big mushroom log you make on the day, and the knowledge to nurture your growbag as it colonized and then fruits. We’ll also provide the recipe so you can make them most of your well-earned harvest.
Lunch is included, along with tea, coffee and cakes – which we can vouch for as delicious, prepared by the Cookery School of Le Manoir.
Find out more, or make a reservation here.
— Raymond Blanc (@raymond_blanc) August 24, 2017
Below is more detail about the course content, and some photos of our last course.
The course starts by coving ‘the basics’ of mushroom cultivation; what is a mushroom – wild and cultivated, mycelia’s important role in ecosystem, stages of growth and preparation,, focus on Oyster Mushrooms, what are important factors that affect success and various other gems of wisdom from Jon and Robbie.
We’ll then move on to introduce Substrate – covering theory, and get hands on. We’ll set up the Pasteurisation and explain why we do it, and what is important – the it’ll be time for lunch.
After that, we move on to inoculate the substrate, learn about spawn and the amount to use it effectively, important parameters including moisture and pH, and practically prepare our own straw ‘logs’, which you’ll be able to take home afterwards.
Here are some photos from August’s class. Finally, we’ll cover the theory about colonization, fruiting and what to do after the first harvest.
— Jennifer Pryke (@JenniferPryke) September 19, 2017
No trip to Le Manoir aux Quat’Saison would be complete without a tour of La Vallée aux Champignons by John Driscoll, and chance to explore the gardens of this beautiful hotel and restaurant.