Pre Poured Agar plates are used to germinate spores, isolate mycelium away from contamination and to expand mycelium. Agar is a very nutritious gel that has been sterilized and then poured into petri dishes. The agar petri dish is completely sterile to allow for mycelium to rapidly grow without contamination.
Dry Malt Extract (DME) - Dry Malt Extract is used along with Agar-Agar powder to provide a nutritious medium for your fungus to thrive. Dry Malt Extract is created by crushing and mashing grain to create wort which is then concentrated and eventually dried. DME provides a reliable source of nutrition to allow for spore germination and rapid mycelial growth. That's why it's the top choice for mycologist around the world.
Colors/dyes offer no real benefit to the growth of the mycelium but they can offer an amazing contrast when attempting to identify high performing areas of the plates.
Individually Sealed Plates - Working with agar can be a very tedious process with our biggest fear being contamination. Most vendors send out bulk plates unwrapped/unsealed in large plastic bags.
We've decided to seal all of our agar plates. This offers the absolute best protection from contamination while opening the bag to pull plates out.
Guaranteed 100% Clean - We stand behind our products and guarantee that the agar plates you receive will be completely sterile and free of contamination. If in the off chance that you receive a contaminated plate we will immediately replace it. If you have any issues at all you may always reply to the order confirmation email or call us. We're here to help!
Working with Agar Plates
Working with agar is generally considered more advanced and requires a sterile environment to work in. However, a sterile environment could simply be an enclose clear tote (still air box or SAB). A Still Air Box can be created by simply drilling 2 arms holes in a clear 50 qt tote. It's a low-cost way to avoid contamination!
Due to high demand Agar plates may take 24-48 hours before they ship but most go out the next day.
Water Agar - This type of agar mixture is simply Agar Agar and Water. No nutrients are added to the mixture. This helps to drastically slow down the growth of your chosen fungi but also slows down other bacteria and molds. This method helps with being able to identify and isolate your chosen fungi without contaminants taking over too quickly. This option does not include any coloring.
Please Note: Condensation may occur due to changes in temperature during shipping. Agar is a sterile gel that contains agar, nutrients and water. During shipping the water in the agar may evaporate and condense on the plastic. The condensation should not be seen as a contamination vector since the water itself is completely sterile.
Check out our blog entry on how to use Agar Plates!
How to inoculate at home
We've created a simple video that discusses how to use our agar and grain bags. Watch it here.