The Mushroom Initiative and Regenerative Farming
Besides growing mushroom, we also have a small farm.
Overview of the farm
Mushrooms, or we usually name them ‘fungi’ in farming, are inseparable to plants in the nature. They are connected symbiotically in the circle of life, as fungi can help plants to extend their roots for more water and food, decompose them when plants die, protect them against disease-causing attackers. Yet, the most commonly known role of fungi in farming is usually infecting plants and makes them sick. However, in a soil with balanced ecology, fungi have far more positive effects on plants than negative.
Starting from April 2018, we started our journey to explore and experiment the practices of ‘regenerative farming’, being a pioneer in Hong Kong, possibly Asia too.
Our main focuses:
- Practice based on accurate soil science
- Emphasize the importance of data collection in the field, for outcome measurement of our practices
- Restore the ecology of soil biology
Brief outline of our practices:
- Make use of the simple handy tools to measure plant health and understand our soil scientifically
Meters such as penetrometer, refractometer, sap nitrate and pH meter, etc.
- Thermal Aerated Compost
Please see Doing compost in Hong Kong: Thermal & Aerobic for details
- Cover Cropping
Like human being, the soil cannot leave without ‘skin’ too. It is thus important to keep the soil covered by green such as legume and grasses. They also provide carbon in the soil when they are chopped and mowed in the soil. Legume is well known of its nitrogen-fixing property, while grass is good for soil structure as it is deep-rooted. A combination of different cover crops serves multiple purposes.
- Planting varieties
Planting different vegetables, flowers, edible or not and herbs are important as the varieties above soil is related to the diversities of life beneath soil.
- Use of mushroom subtracts
- Compost Tea