Guide to using mushroom kits for beginners

Written by By Brett Mather, - Published on Feb 08, 2024

Mushroom grow kit box

Starting your journey into the world of mushroom cultivation can be both exciting and a little daunting for beginners. However, with the advent of modern mushroom grow kits, the process has become significantly more accessible and straightforward. Whether you're interested in growing gourmet oyster mushrooms for your next culinary creation or cultivating lion's mane mushrooms in Australia for their health benefits, this guide is designed to help you get started with your very own mushroom cultivation project at home.

What is a Mushroom Grow Kit?

A mushroom grow kit is a pre-assembled package that contains everything you need to start growing mushrooms at home. These kits are designed to remove the guesswork from mushroom cultivation, making it easier for beginners to get started. A typical kit includes a substrate (the material on which mushrooms grow), mycelium, and sometimes additional items like a humidity tent or spray bottle to maintain moisture levels.

man holding oyster mushroom kit

Choosing Your Mushroom Grow Kit

When selecting a mushroom kit, consider what type of mushrooms you want to grow. Oyster mushrooms and lion's mane are popular choices due to their taste, nutritional benefits, and relative ease of cultivation. In Australia, these varieties are well-suited to local conditions, making them excellent choices for beginners. Look for kits that specify they are suitable for the Australian climate and that offer detailed instructions tailored to the specific variety of mushroom.

Variety of mushroom grow kits

Setting Up Your Mushroom Kit

Location: Choose a spot in your home that's out of direct sunlight. Mushrooms require a stable, indirect light source to grow. A temperature range of 18-24°C is ideal for most mushroom types.

Humidity: Mushrooms thrive in high humidity. Many kits come with a humidity tent or bag to help maintain the necessary moisture level. Ensure you follow the instructions regarding ventilation to prevent mold growth.

Watering: Use a misting bottle to gently water your mushroom kit, keeping the substrate moist but not waterlogged. Consistency is key—mushrooms don't like to dry out.

Fresh Air Exchange: Fresh air exchange is critical for mushroom growth. It helps to reduce CO2 levels around your mushrooms, encouraging them to grow upwards and develop fully. You can achieve this by:

Opening the grow area or tent for a few minutes several times a day to allow fresh air in.

Ensuring the kit’s ventilation system, such as small holes in the bag, is not obstructed.

Using a small fan to gently circulate air around the room, but not directly at the mushroom kit to avoid drying it out.

Caring for Your Mushroom Kit

  • Monitor Growth: Watch your mushrooms closely. Growth can be rapid once it starts. Some varieties, like oyster mushrooms, can double in size daily under optimal conditions.

  • Harvesting: Harvest time varies by mushroom type but generally occurs when the caps are fully opened. For oyster mushrooms, this is typically within 5-10 days after the mushrooms begin to form. Lion's mane mushrooms are ready when they have a full, shaggy appearance.

Tips for Success

  • Keep it Clean: Before handling your mushroom kit or harvesting mushrooms, wash your hands to prevent contamination.

  • Optimal Conditions: While mushroom kits are designed to be beginner-friendly, paying attention to the specific needs of your mushroom variety, such as temperature and humidity, can significantly impact your success.

  • Experiment: Don't be afraid to try growing different types of mushrooms. Each variety has its unique flavor and health benefits.


Mushroom grow kits offer a fantastic way for beginners to dive into the world of mushroom cultivation. They simplify the process, making it accessible and enjoyable. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you're well on your way to growing your own mushrooms at home. Whether you're intrigued by the culinary versatility of oyster mushrooms or the health benefits of lion's mane, mushroom cultivation is a rewarding hobby that can yield delicious and nutritious results. Remember, the key to success lies in maintaining the right conditions and having a bit of patience. Happy growing!