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USM R & D 18(1): 73-76 (2010) ISSN 0302-7937

Growth and yield performance of oyster mushroom (Pleurotus ostreatus) feeding on different agro-industrial wastes
Catherine Hazel M Aguilar, Joey Real Marie I Barbosa, Florence Lasalita- Zapico, & Remedios S Flamiano Science Department, College of Science and Mathematics, Mindanao State University, Fatima, General Santos City, Email: Tel no. (6383) 380-6555 Abstract This study aimed to determine which of the three common agro-industrial wastes, namely, rice hulls, fresh coco coir, and banana leaves, is the best substrate for oyster mushroom culture. Data gathered were on the number of days for complete mycelial growth, appearance of pinheads and the maturation of fruiting bodies, the number of fruiting bodies, size of individual mushrooms, and total yield. Data analysis using ANOVA showed significant differences between substrates. Results revealed that rice hull substrate was the best for oyster mushroom cultivation since it manifested positive results for all parameters evaluated. As for the coir dust substrate, mushroom growth did not progress past the spawn running stage. Possible explanations to this are the high salinity and phenolic content, high nitrogen immobilization, and the high C:N ratio in coco coir. This cessation of growth in the coir could be explained by the phytotoxic effects of the phenolic compounds. It is suggested therefore that coco coir should be used with caution and that it should be pre-processed before use as substrate for mushroom production. Key words: Agro-Industrial wastes, oyster mushroom, phenolics, phytotoxicity, Pleurotus ostreatus Introduction Oyster mushroom (Pleurotus ostreatus) is an edible basidiomycete which is widely grown all over Asia. It is used in the preparation of many continental dishes and is purported to have medicinal properties. It is generally believed that this particular species of mushroom provides therapy for patients suffering from many forms of cancer and high cholesterol levels. Oyster mushroom is also one of the few known carnivorous mushrooms whose mycelia can kill and digest nematodes. This is an adaptive mechanism which enables them to obtain nitrogen in swampy soils, tree trunks, and other nitrogen-poor substrates. This proteinextracting ability of oyster mushrooms also makes them a very popular alternative energy source for dieting individuals (Shah 2004). A significant portion of farm wastes is thrown away or left to rot in the fields. These organic wastes (straws, leaves, roots, fruits, etc) can be recycled in several ways so that the environment may be relieved of pollution. One such alternative is using these organic wastes for oyster mushroom cultivation. These mushrooms thrive well in many lignocellulosic materials. Digestion of these materials yields glucose and other forms of sugars (Vetayasuporn 2006). Since many sugars are released which are converted onto sources of carbon when digested, lignocellulosic materials are likely to be used as substrates for P. ostreatus cultivation. Materials and methods Substrate preparation and spawn inoculation The substrates were soaked in water mixed with urea for three days, drained, and allowed to ferment for five days prior to spawn inoculation. Plastic bags (18 x 25 cm) were halfway filled with the three different substrates and their openings were stuffed with cotton plugs. These plugs served as ventilation holes while keeping out harmful organisms and contaminants. The substrate bags were pricked with pins for aeration and for the occasional moistening of the developing mushrooms. The bags were then autoclaved at 121oC at 15 lbs psi. Oyster mushroom spawn were then inoculated into the three different substrates under complete darkness. The room was kept closed until the mycelia were widespread. Experimental set-up and data analysis This experiment was laid out in a Completely Randomized Design (CRD) with the three substrates as treatments and with five replications. Growth parameters such as the number of days for complete mycelial growth, appearance of pinheads, and the maturation of fruiting bodies were recorded. Data on the number of fruiting bodies, size of individual mushrooms, and total yield were also collected.


Data analysis was done primarily using descriptive statistics such as the comparison of treatment means and percentages. The collected data were also subjected to One-way Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) to ascertain significant differences between treatments. Results and discussion The suitability of three agro-industrial wastes (rice hulls, fresh coir dust, and banana leaves) for oyster mushroom cultivation was assessed. Analysis of variance (shown in Table 1) done on the collected data detected significant differences between the three substrates. Table 1. Analysis of Variance on the Three Substrates ANOVA Source of Variation Treatments Within Treatments Total SS 5843.658 6438.833 12282.49 df 7 112 119 MS 834.8083 57.48958 F 14.52104* P-value 2.45E-13 F crit 2.092381

*statistically significant at = .05 Results in Figure 1 show that the oyster mushrooms grown in the rice hull substrates took only 2-3 weeks for the completion of spawn running. The mushrooms in the other two substrates completed the spawn running phase 3-4 weeks after. Pinhead emergence was first observed in the rice hull substrate (23.8 days) and in the mushrooms grown in the banana leaves shortly thereafter (25 days). No emergence of pinheads was observed in the mushrooms grown in the coir dust substrate. The mycelia formed on the coir substrate turned brown and remained so during the duration of the study. The fruiting bodies also formed first in the cultivated in rice hulls (20.4 days) while those in the banana leaf substrate appeared after 28 days. In terms of the yield parameters, the mushrooms grown in rice hulls also demonstrated better performance when compared to their counterparts in the banana leaf substrate (Fig 2). Rice hull-grown mushrooms were bigger and exhibited better fruiting body formation than those in the banana leaves. Consequently, greater yield was obtained for the oyster mushrooms in the rice hull substrates. No data was obtained for the mushrooms grown in fresh coir dust since they did not progress past the mycelial stage. The study has demonstrated the superiority of rice hulls as a substrate for oyster mushroom cultivation when compared with either fresh coir dust and banana leaves. This could be attributed to the high organic content (hemicellulose, cellulose, and lignin) of the rice hulls (de Suoza et al 2002). In a study done by Baiyeri and Mbah (2006), rice hull-based media was adjudged as the best substrate because of its capacity for water retention. Another study done by Baysal and Peker (2001) showed that the rice hull/waste paper substrate combination induced faster mycelial growth and higher yield of oyster mushroom when compared to waste paper alone. In this study, relatively poor results were obtained from the oyster mushrooms grown in banana leaves. These results are consistent with findings by Obadai et al (2003), Bonatti et al

Fig 1. Number of bags for the completion of spawn running, pinhead formation, and fruiting body formation.

Fig 2. Number of fruiting bodies, size, and average yield.


(2004) and Ayodele and Okhouya (2007) where the suitability of banana leaves as a potential mushroom substrate ranged from moderate to poor. This may have been due to the fact that banana leaves take longer to decompose, hence limiting the bioconversion of the substrate into available nutrients. Studies done by Belewu MA and Belewu KY (2005) on Volvariella sp and Vega et al (2005) and Motato et al (2006) on Pleurotus, however, did not concur with these results. As for the oyster mushrooms grown in coco coir, substrate concentration of 100% coco coir proved toxic. These results are supported by findings of Ma and Nichols (2004). Using lettuce bioassay, they discovered that root elongation was grossly inhibited in media containing fresh coir dust. This phytotoxicity, according to them, was due to the high concentrations of phenolic substances in the substrate. The coir dust substrates capacity to retain water also aggravated the toxicity since certain phenolic compounds are watersoluble. Another study done by Vetayasuporn (2006) on Pleurotus showed that coconut coir has low biological efficiency when compared with sawdust and bagasse. The negative effect of the high phenol concentrations in coir is further compounded by its high salinity. Chemical analysis of fresh coir revealed that it contained elevated NaCl and KCl levels (Handrek 1993). The high electrical conductivity of coir also resulted in reduced water potential and consequently the inhibition of plant growth. In addition to this, coir also had low concentrations of sulfur and calcium (Handreck and Black 2002). Aside from the toxic effects of chlorides, Cresswell (1992) discovered a small amount of nitrogen drawdown in fresh coir. This is the nitrogen that becomes unavailable to the mushrooms due to the low nitrogen content of the coir substrate. Arenas et al (2002) reported that substrates with more than 50% coir dust reduced growth due to high nitrogen immobilization by microorganisms and a high C:N ratio in the coir. They, therefore, advised that coir dust should be processed first before use. Exposure of the coir to the elements would result in the leaching out of the salts, phenolics and would render the coir more suitable as a substrate for oyster mushroom especially if amended with deficient nutrients. Conclusions 1. 2. 3. Rice hull substrate for oyster mushroom cultivation proved quite satisfactory; Banana leaf substrate gave poor results because of low bioconversion potential; Coco coir substrate (unprocessed) proved detrimental to the growth of oyster mushroom.

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