Pleurotus florida colonisation on cold water-washed straw after spawning was at a higher rate than on the sieved or untreated straw. Washing increased the number of Pleurotus colonies present in the first 20 days and contaminant fungal colonies were absent. At the time of initiation of sporophere primoridia by day 27 the high NDF cell soluble content, minimum (15%) DM loss with maximum (44%) in vitro OM digestibility indicated that the available straw preparation was most suitable as animal feed. The results suggested that to reduce substrate OM loss an appropriate stage of growth of a specific fungus should be determined when employed for the nutritive upgrading of straw or other crop residue. © 1988.
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