A brief history on mushrooms cultivation
Article Excerpt * The cultivation of edible mushrooms: an option for the use of agricultural waste (Jaime Rodriguez Abitia), published in Research Today (Bulletin 19, August 1991) National Polytechnic Institute, reproduced with permission.
* Jiquilpan is a small town in the picturesque mexican state of Michoacan, quite close to Chapala Lake, insomuch that is adjacent to the area of lowlands and wetlands that dissapeared when the waters receded to supply the thirsty city of Guadalajara and which was named as The Cienega. Rich lands for agriculture, like all located on river banks and deltas, they became an irrigation district, the same vegetables cultivated staple crops such as corn, wheat, sorghum and safflower. 

Jiquilpan is also at the foot of a plateau which, every year, on a winding road and steep climb long convoys of cars full of eager vacationers for the Sun and the Sea from the beaches of Manzanillo. As people have passed the curves and begin the climb in less than ten minutes are already running at high speed across the plain, almost a mile above. 

Also every year the rains come. The earth, parched and cracked, and sponge is moistened, waking all life forms harbored latent. In some parts of the plateau, before they sprout grass, emerging everywhere hidden in the ground fine white nets which spread rapidly. While the seeds of green plants are just coming heavily from his lethargy, these nets grow and intertwine closely with such speed that within a few weeks have made several three-dimensional meshes perfectly interconnected, like a big monster hidden feed of all organic matter, constituted by the remains of animals and plants that have died since the last raining season and that had accumulated during the drought, turning it into minerals that bind the soil, fertilizing it. The people who come on weekends for "picnic" is not even aware of its huge size (up to tens of meters) because such net is under their feet. 

As the the summer rains present more often and increases atmospheric humidity, finally, one afternoon a cold wind comes to the meadow and soon rages, the sky is obscured by a large mass of noisy clouds announcing the first big storm of the season. 

In less than half an hour the rain falls with a heavy hail, lowering the temperature rapidly. The storm will be over in a few hours but this time the temperature remains low which with the high moisture in the cold dawn, waking up the monster. The large set of networks, which after reaching its maximum growth had stopped waiting for the signal, is activated. 

Just as it did last year, a decade ago, centuries ago, as it has done for thousands of years, emerging transformed millions of tiny dots as the head of a pin that grow near the surface to reach size from a few ovals, breaking the cover earthy, become only a 4 or 5 days in a very striking umbrellas. 

Next week the walkers reach the meadow as usual but this time they have a pleasant surprise: wild mushrooms everywhere surround them, wonderful and infusing a sense of respect to these sudden and fleeting beings, now showing in their eyes, tempting, and that if the walkers returned to fetch the next week could not find them anywhere, having gone as fairies and goblins. They are relatives of those authentic capricious and elusive ghosts that appear in parks and gardens with the dew of sunrise and fall apart into a mass liquefied and stinking with the first rays of the midday sun. 

Mysterious creatures and fleeting ... these are the mushrooms.
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