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Brown button mushroom or champignon (Agaricus bisporus var. hortensis)

The brown button mushroom or champignon, Agaricus bisporus, is the most grown edible mushroom worldwide. However it is a so-called compost mushroom and so it is unfortunately not so easy to grow as a hobby in the garden or in the house


The growing of champignons was discovered by gardeners in France "by chance": Around about 1630, it became popular in aristocratic houses to grow melons and similar produce on hotbeds filled with compost.


Champignon farm
Champignon farm

The champignons then appeared as a side effect. This chance discovery was taken up by the gardeners, who poured the water used to wash the champignons which contained spores and remains of mycelium onto additional hotbeds. This knowledge was then refined and they soon discovered that the so-called Champignon de Paris could also be grown in cellars. Nowadays, specialised mushroom farms grow champignons in large quantities in air-conditioned rooms.



Hobby mushroom growers need to get hold of very fresh horse manure (no older than 4 weeks) or dried horse manure, e.g. pellets (our products "Manakara" and "Vitadung"). The horse manure and chicken manure is mixed with gypsum and left to ferment in a pile until a temperature of up to 80° C. has been reached. This so-called substrate is then inoculated with champignon spawn.



If you feel like growing champignons, we recommend you to read the very detailed chapter on this topic in the book "Pilzanbau in Haus und Garten" from Jolanda Englbrecht (unfortunately only available in German). 


We can supply you with spawn for the brown button mushrooms (Agaricus bisporus var. hortensis)..


Profile of the brown button mushroom

Taste and preparation:

Aromatic mushroom which is firm to the bite and which nearly everyone has probably eaten at some point in time.

You can steam them, fry them or use them in sauces. If you cut it into thin slices the champgnon cooks very quickly. You must heat up whole or half mushrooms for somewhat longer. Gently fried in butter, champignons are an essential ingredient of an English breakfast.

Production and marketing:

The champignon places very special requirements on the growing substrate, so it is normally produced in mushroom farms which solely specialise in growing this type of mushroom. The mushroom farms have large halls fitted with multistorey, tiered growing beds, where the mushrooms grow on a substrate mixture containing nutrient rich horse and chicken manure.

Growing in the garden:

Complicated to do because you need to ferment the horse and chicken manure before use.

Our products:

We supply champignon spawn to mushroom enthusiasts who want to grow them on animal manure. However, we do not supply growing instructions for this mushroom type.
Spawn for brown button mushrooms (champignons)


© Nicola Krämer. Mushroom spawn and growing advice since 1999