Growing Wild Mushrooms in your Garden – Winecaps Rule!

winecap mushroom stropharia rugosoannulata

Pioneer Winecap mushroom at lower left. They'll come up thickly in this area for the next 6 weeks or so - then keep coming sporadically through summer and fall, if conditions are right.

Winecaps (Stropharia rugosoannulata) are among the tastiest wild mushrooms: firm and meaty, with a taste of the nutty/smoky quality that makes porcini so special. They’re also large, easy to clean and almost as easy to grow as potatoes. Bill wrote a complete how-to last year.

One time-honored part of the procedure is feeding the newly planted bed with a pet food soup. Really. Nutrients galore. We knew it worked, but Bill being Bill, he also set up an experiment. One new bed got the feeding treatment, one didn’t. Results are now in – or more accurately, up.

The cat food bed wins paws down. Big fat winecaps are popping up in it left and right, while the control bed is still mushroom free. You’ll have the food right on hand if you have a cat, which of course you should.

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  • Rudy Jensen Said,

    Hi i would like to try and grow winecaps where could i get the spawn Thanks Rudy

    Welcome, Rudy
    The easiest place to get the spawn is the one referenced in Bill’s how-to wine caps article: It’s the megastore of home grown mushroom supplies; try not to get carried away!

  • Mark Said,

    I am currently growing winecaps and after a year they have just started to grow. They appear to be eaten by slugs as fast as they grow. What can I do?


    hi Mark,

    I’m afraid the weather that brings mushrooms is also the weather that brings slugs. They’ve been discussed here more than once, and although my indexing skills aren’t great, entering “slugs” in the search field on the upper right would have brought you to several posts, including the reasonably comprehensive Meanwhile, I’m happy to hear that your winecaps are taking off and hope you can get a decent crop in spite of the competition.

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