Alexander Tsarev
Mushroom industry

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Saprophytic nematodes

Saprophytic nematodes are not considered to be mushroom pests. With their oral cavity that looks like a tube, they suck in organic nutrients and microorganisms and especially bacteria that exist in great amount in compost and in the casing layer. That is why poorly prepared and pasteurized compost is not well suited for the development of mushroom mycelium, but is a favorable environment for the nutrition and reproduction of nematodes that have survived pasteurization. In nonselective substrate, with overly humid areas, nematode population grows incredibly fast. The toxins they release and the increasing number of putrefactive bacteria weaken the mycelium growth. The same thing can happen when water leaks through the casing layer after watering, which causes the mycelium to «suffocate». The compost becomes watery and darkens while there’s an objectionable odor in the room because of putrefactive bacteria.

When the infection is severe, the nematodes swarm in great amounts on the casing surface. They form columns that look like erect waving sticks and thin threads that flicker in the light. In this condition, nematodes are able to adhere to flies, mites and personnel that harvest mushrooms.

The swarming of nematodes of the casing surface

The swarming of nematodes of the casing surface
Moreover, nematodes can have the ability to dry slowly and form a «cyst»; a temporary protective layer due to which they can survive in adverse conditions, being in a dormant state for a long period of time. In this state, nematodes are easily spread by wind. Parthenogenesis, which is the kind of sexual reproduction that allows females to reproduce without males, makes it possible for the nematode population to grow in favorable conditions.

Half-empty beds – the result of severe infection of the casing layer by nematodes

Half-empty beds – the result of severe infection of the casing layer by nematodes
A poor harvesting technique: that is when mushroom stipes and remains are left on the beds – promotes the development of nematodes, hence they will feed on decaying mushroom tissue.


amir ommati:

thx a lot for your best answer to my mr tsarev.
1-for your first qustion i saw mycogone in day 13...

Царев Александр Владимирович:

Dear Amir Ommati!
On which day after the application of peat to compost, the first signs of a mikogon...

Царев Александр Владимирович:

Dear Fouzi
You will be contacted by my partner. He is an Arab and you will be comfortable with him...

watering first flush mushrooms


sir pliz tell me about the irrigation requirements of the mushroom cultivated in plastic bags with straw...

Царев Александр Владимирович:

Dear Emmanuel Chimanga!
I'm sorry that I could not immediately answer you. The usual depth of...

Царев Александр Владимирович:

Dear Fouad Dagher
Tunnels of 2 phases (pasteurization) of compost are made at the location of the...

Царев Александр Владимирович:

Dear Ali Karim!
I apologize for not being able to answer you right away.
Please send more information...

Царев Александр Владимирович:

Dear Hai Nguyen!
The usual depth of the cover layer is 4-6 cm. Weight is 26-30 kg per 1 m2. It depends...

Царев Александр Владимирович:

Dear Shahar!
I do not use formalin for a long time. The best way to disinfect the growth chambers...

Царев Александр Владимирович:

Dear Tejpal!
These mites usually live in the feathers of chickens. If there was a lot of cold compost...

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