Join the Bloom & Grow Garden Club!

Let Maria slide into your inbox twice a month with planty education and inspiration created just for YOU to help you “keep blooming and keep growing” your indoor jungles and spirits (you’ll also be the first to know about upcoming events, launches and other exciting things we are working on!).



Do you want to learn how to grow mushrooms at home? In the third episode of our Mushroom Mini-series, Billy and I share how you can enjoy the process of growing mushrooms indoors. Our relationship as co-hosts, and more importantly, as life partners, has made this journey more delightful. We enjoy our time together as self-proclaimed “mushroom farmers,” learning and growing together. In this episode, we are grateful to welcome back Louis from North Spore who shares his mushroom expertise and beginner-friendly tips!


In this episode, we learn:

  • [05:42] What is it like being a mushroom farmer?
  • [06:40] Multiple harvests from the grow kits through proper moisture management
  • [08:51] Debunking magic mushroom misconceptions
  • [2:44] Billy and Maria’s positive experiences with Lion's mane mushroom
  • [14:34] How do you grow mushrooms indoors?
  • [14:44] #1 Spray & Grow Kits (The perfect beginner species!)
  • [18:02] #2 Fruiting Blocks
  • [19:17] Where can you get premium quality growlights?
  • [21:05] Where can you find delightful wind chimes that make for a perfect gift choice?
  • [22:23] #3 Martha Tents (aka North Spore’s Boom Room)
  • [25:36] How do you avoid mold with a Martha tent?
  • [28:18] What's the ideal humidity level on the humidistat for the fruiting blocks?
  • [30:39] What comprises a fruiting block and what goes into making it?
  • [32:17] How do you distinguish spawns versus spores?
  • [37:13] How do you pasteurize something?
  • [37:58] What would be three great beginner mushrooms to start in a grow tent?
  • [40:09] Economics of mushroom cultivation
  • [42:26] Can a Martha tent enable a wider range of mushroom growth compared to a mono tub?
  • [43:21] #3 Mono tub
  • [50:22] What are the two substrates of Nameko mushrooms?
  • [54:23] Who is North Spore?


Order my book!

Growing Joy: The Plant Lover's Guide to Cultivating Happiness (and Plants) by Maria Failla, Illustrated by Samantha Leung

Don't forget to subscribe to the podcast,

so you don't miss the amazing episodes we have coming up!

Enjoy an exclusive 10% off your mushrooms,

use code ‘GROWINGJOY' at!



Spray & Grow Kits

Louis explained that spray and grow kits are perfect for beginners who have no prior experience growing mushrooms. At North Spore, they offer four types of these kits: Pink Oyster, Golden Oyster, Blue Oyster, and Lion's Mane. These mushrooms are tough, grow quickly, and can adapt well. You don't need a fancy setup, but you do need a humid environment, good airflow, some light, and cleanliness.

Even with just a spray and grow kit, you can easily create a small humidity chamber. Grab a plastic bag, poke some holes in it, and put it over the box. This will keep more moisture in and help your mushrooms grow better.


Fruiting Block Varieties

Fruiting blocks are ready-to-use substrates for growing mushrooms. They already have mycelium and pasteurized substrate, which makes them easy to use and increases your chances of success.

North Spore has fruiting blocks for different types of mushrooms, so you can choose the ones you like. They are also affordable and save you time, which is great for busy people!


Martha Tents

Martha Tent is a more accessible option for growing mushrooms. Just set it up with a few things to make sure there's good airflow: a fan with a vent, a humidifier, and a humidistat to control humidity levels. You can use a humidifier and a grow tent that you might already have for your plants.

Louis explained that it's better to have the humidifier connected externally and a system that sucks air from the bottom and pushes it out from the top. This way, you can direct the spores outside instead of having them spread all over your space. Another option is to vent the air towards a standing air purifier.

If you can't make your own Martha Tent, you can always get North Spore's BoomRoom kit, which is a self-contained and fully automated chamber for growing and incubating mushrooms.



A monotub is a plastic container used for growing mushrooms, especially manure-based mushrooms. To start, you mix prepared substrate (either made from manure or a mix of vermiculite and gypsum) with mushroom mycelium spawn in the tub. This creates a nutrient-rich environment for the mycelium to grow and spread. It's important to keep everything clean to avoid mold or contaminants.

Sanitizing the tub and the area around it, ensuring good ventilation, and controlling the temperature and humidity are also crucial for success.


Beginner Mushrooms to Grow in a Grow Tent

  • Reishi: Can be grown right in the bag and doesn't necessarily require a tent, but it can benefit from being in one.
  • Lion's Mane: Performs better in a grow tent compared to growing on a countertop.
  • Chestnut: Not difficult to grow, though it takes a little longer.
  • Italian oyster: Perfect for beginners as they colonize quickly

There are many different methods of growing mushrooms indoors, so you can find one that fits your needs and budget.  Regardless of which beginner mushroom varieties you choose to grow, it's always best to start with small steps and enjoy the process.


Mentioned in our conversation:



Thank you to our episode sponsors:

Soltech Solutions

Bring the beauty of nature into your home. Soltech Solutions makes the grow lights you’ve heard me talk about for years: whether you are looking for a pendant light, track lighting, or a simple bulb to screw into any standard light fixture, Soltech has got you covered. They offer quality products with great customer service, free shipping, and a 5-year warranty. Keep the sun shining and the plants green inside your home with Soltech Solutions.

Check them out at and get 15% off with code “bloom15”.

Wind River Chimes

Bring more peace, serenity, and magic into your home with chimes. Wind River is a Virginia-based company creating premium handcrafted and hand-tuned wind chimes for over 35 years. If you are looking for a new way to grow joy in your life and find a moment of peace, a Wind River chime is the perfect addition for your home or garden. Plus, it's a perfect personalized gift for your loved ones!

Visit and use code GROWINGJOY to receive free engraving on all Corinthian Bells wind chimes.


Follow North Spore:

Louis' LinkedIn


Follow Maria and Growing Joy:

Order my book: Growing Joy: The Plant Lover's Guide to Cultivating Happiness (and Plants) by Maria Failla, Illustrated by Samantha Leung

Join the Bloom and Grow Garden Party Community Platform & App AKA the plantiest and kindest corner of the internet! Get your FREE 2-week trial here!

Take the Plant Parent Personality Quiz (Get the perfect plants, projects and educational resources for YOUR Lifestyle)

Support Bloom and Grow Radio by becoming a Plant Friend on Patreon!

Instagram: @growingjoywithmaria

Tiktok: @growingjoywithmaria

Subscribe to the Growing Joy Youtube channel! /growingjoywithmaria


Pinterest: @growingjoywithmaria

Leave a Reply

Follow along,  plant friends!


Stop wasting money on plants that don’t fit with your lifestyle.

Take the Plant Parent Personality™ quiz, and get curated recommendations for plants, projects, and podcast episodes inspired by your lifestyle to unlock your Plant Parent Potential!

Take the Plant Parent Personality™ Quiz