Ornamental fungus gardens

People have decorative plant gardens, rock gardens- what about some sort of fungi? There are plenty of colorful and unsual-looking mushrooms out there. Are there any people with ornamental mushroom gardens?

(And what sort of special treatment would you need to grow a healthy exotic fungus crop?)

My guess would be difficulty of cultivation. You can germinate a swath of mushrooms, but I would imagine it would difficult to control the cultivation of smaller plantings, such as you’d want to arrange in a garden-type setting. Also I get the feeling that individual mushroom species have narrower parameters within which they’ll grow. Add to that their general short-livedness, and the payoff-per-labor ratio would be very skewed indeed. And that’s without even considering the difficulty of collecting and managing fungus spores, which are far, smaller than even the smallest seeds.

That said, I’m sure there are committed mycologists who lovingly cultivate their favorite fungi. Just as there are breeders of killifish, an incredibly beautiful but short-lived and difficult to breed family of fish. But though killies have been kept by aquarists for decades, they’ve never really caught on in a commercial way. I expect it’s much the same with fungi, which I imagine have require even more complicated husbandry than killies.

Don’t you order killifish by mail, and you get a piece of something spongey with killifish eggs in it - put it in water and wait for the fishies to grow?

I suppose somehow you could grow fungus on some kind of medium down in your basement, but it hardly seems worth the trouble as you’d have to take interested parties down there with a flashlight. I would rather grow my own edible mushrooms if I were to set up a fungus farm.

It depends on the species; they don’t all reproduce in the same fashion. Which is kinda my same point.

You can grow lichens, which some consider very ornamental.

I have had some interesting fungus grow in my office when I forgot to clean out my coffee mug.

Mushrooms are ephemeral. The part underground is long-lived, but the part you see above ground doesn’t last very long - sometimes just a matter of hours.

Then again, I could see that adding to the whole charm.

Fungi, like wildflowers are difficult to control. They will grow where you don’t want them and not, where you do.

I have a short, rotting sumac stump in my back yard upon which is growing a very pretty ringed shelf fungus and my husband has a warning not to remove it. (I think there are fairies living under there!) :wink:

And we have some very pretty green lichens growing on the porch step carpeting on the north side of our house. But, not wanting to have to replace the carpeting, I regularly douse it with a little vinegar.

I do enjoy a walk in a mature stand of trees which is a good home for morels, mushooms, lichens and others of the family.

Lots of possibilities under “mushroom kit”.
Here’s one:

Looks like they have kits for 14 different kinds of mushrooms. All you need do is get em all, and arrange them artfully about your growth chamber.