Properly Set Up Spore Syringe

How To Use The Spore Syringe You Purchased

Spore syringes are an essential tool for any mycology enthusiast who wants to experiment with gourmet, medicinal, or legal psychedelic mushrooms at home. These syringes contain a concentrated solution of spores that can, in a hypothetical situation, be used to inoculate substrate and start the mushroom cultivation process. However, using a spore syringe can be a delicate process that requires careful attention to cleanliness and sterility. In this article, we will provide you with step-by-step instructions on how to use a spore syringe effectively and efficiently. We'll discuss how to set it up, how to use your it, how to store it properly, and how to watch out for contamination. 

Need spores for microscopy ASAP? Feel free to check out our highly-reviewed selection of Magic Mushroom Spores. Now, let's get back to the info.  

spore syringe

How to Set Up A Spore Syringe

1. Check your syringe for Issues

Before using a spore syringe, it is important to ensure that it is set up correctly. First, remove the syringe from its packaging and inspect it for any defects or damage. Many spore syringes from shady vendors come infected with bacteria, and you'll have to make sure your syringe is not contaminated. However, if you buy from Eden Shrooms, contamination in the syringe should be the least of your concerns. Just because it isn't contaminated now, doesn't mean that it can't become infected in the future, or lose viability. Later in this guide, we'll discuss shelf-life. 

2. Set Up The Needle 

Next, carefully remove the needle from its packaging and attach it to the syringe by twisting it gently until it is firmly in place. It is essential to ensure that the needle is tightly secured to the syringe to prevent any leakage or contamination during use. We'd recommend using gloves wiped with alcohol, and performing this move quickly to reduce the chances of contaminants entering the syringe. 

3. Sterilize Your Equipment 

Maintaining a sterile environment is critical when using a spore syringe. To prevent contamination, it is important to clean all surfaces and equipment thoroughly before use. This includes the work surface, syringe, needle, and any other equipment that will come into contact with the spores. To sterilize the needle and syringe, you can use an alcohol swab or a flame. Be sure to allow the needle to cool completely before using it to prevent damage to the spores.

Spore Syringe Contents

How to Use A Spore Syringe (Three Methods)

*Note: Growing mycelium from Psilocybe mushrooms is illegal in the USA. Our spore syringes are sold for microscopy only, and this information is exclusively for educational value. 

1. Inoculating Agar Dishes With Spores 

Agar is a gelatinous substance that is commonly used as a substrate for growing mushrooms. To inoculate agar with spores, you will need to prepare a sterile petri dish and pour the agar into it. Once the agar has solidified, you can use the syringe to apply one or two drops of spore solution onto the surface of the agar plate. To do this, insert the needle into the agar at a shallow angle and gently inject the spores. Another great method to spread the spores onto agar is by streaking the surface using an inoculation loop. Be sure to cover the injection site with parafilm or a sterile tape to prevent contamination once done.

The agar method is always preferred as it allows the cultivator to detect contamination early & clearly. It also allows them to select the best part of a mycelial colony and transfer it to grain. 

Inoculating Agar WIth Spore Syringe


2. Injecting the Spore Syringe into an All-in-One Grow Bag (Easiest Method) 

An all-in-one grow bag is a self-contained unit that contains all the necessary grain, fruiting substrates and a self-healing injection port. To use a spore syringe with an all-in-one grow bag, you will first need to clean the injection port with an alcohol swab. Next, insert the needle into the injection port and gently inject the spores. Be sure to remove the needle carefully and seal the injection port with tape to prevent contamination, if it is not "self-healing". This grow bag is a good example of one that does have self-healing injection ports. 

 All-in-one grow bag


3. Inoculating Sterile Grain Spawn With A Spore Syringe 

Using a spore syringe to inoculate a sterile grain substrate is a common method for cultivating mushroom mycelium. To begin, you will need to prepare the sterile grain jars by sterilizing it in a pressure cooker or autoclave. Once the grain has cooled to room temperature, you can begin inoculating it with the spore syringe. First, flame sterilize the needle of the syringe until it glows red hot. Then, insert the needle into the substrate and inject a small amount of spores. It's important to work in a clean and sterile environment to prevent contamination during the inoculation process. Repeat this process several times throughout the substrate until it is fully inoculated with spores. It helps to angle the injection towards the walls of the jar, so you can see when mycelium begins forming. Spore Syringe Refrigeration

How To Store Your Spore Syringe 

Method 1: Refrigeration

So, can you refrigerate mushroom spores? Yes! If you refrigerate your spore syringes, you can expect them to last up to 1 year. Refrigeration is a common method for storing spore syringes and spore prints, and the optimal temperature range for storing spore syringes is between 2-8°C, or around 35-47°F. This low temperature helps to slow down the aging of the mushroom spores, thus extending their shelf life. Refrigeration is also effective at preventing the growth of bacteria and mold, which can contaminate the syringe and overtake or kill the spores. To use this storage method, simply store the unused or partially used spore syringe in an opaque bag or container, preferably airtight, in the refrigerator. Make sure to leave the label on the syringe, or mark the container with the date and the strain name.

Method 2: Freezing

Freezing is not recommended as a primary storage method for spore syringes, but it can be used as a backup option. Freezing can damage or kill the spores, leading to a decrease in viability. However, if a spore syringe is in danger of expiring anyways, or susceptible to contamination, freezing it can potentially extend its shelf life for a few weeks. This method is only truly viable for cold-weather mushroom strains whose spores have naturally adapted to deal with freezing temperatures. To use this method, simply store the spore syringe in an opaque container with an airtight closure in the freezer. It is important to note that the syringe should be allowed to thaw completely before use. Spores should never be refrozen after thawing, as the likelihood of spores surviving multiple freeze-thaw cycles is slim.

Method 3: Dark Container Storage

Spores are sensitive to light and can be damaged when exposed to it for prolonged periods. Dark storage is an effective method for preventing light-induced damage. Simply store the spore syringe or print in an opaque container, such as a black plastic bag or a dark glass jar. This will prevent any light from reaching the spores and damaging them.

How to Detect Spore Syringe Contamination

There are a few different signs that your spore syringe may be contaminated. These include:

  • Fuzzy growth or discoloration in the syringe (Most common) 

  • A foul odor emanating from the syringe.

  • Visible chunks of foreign debris in the syringe. Be careful not to mix that up with clumps of spores. Shake your syringe heavily to break up the spores into the solution. 

  • Cosmetic issues on the syringe itself like scrapes or holes

If you notice any of these signs, it's best to assume that your syringe is contaminated and take appropriate action. Keep in mind that contamination can happen even after you receive your syringe. Thus, you'll need some reliable methods of storing your spore syringe in a clean environment. 

In the Reddit post below, you'll see a syringe that is packed with spores. There were so many spores that the user assumed it was contaminated. If you are not 100% sure about contamination, an obvious yet practical thing to do is ask a mycology forum! Could you imagine if this person had thrown out such a beautiful syringe?  


Contaminated spore syringe?
by u/Ryes01 in MushroomGrowers


What to Do if You Have a Contaminated Spore Syringe

If you have a contaminated spore syringe, it's important to dispose of it properly to prevent the contamination from spreading to your other mushroom-growing supplies. One infected syringe sucks, but could you imagine bacteria or mold running through your entire lab? Here's what you should do:

  1. Wear gloves and a face mask to prevent the spread of contamination.

  2. Place the contaminated syringe in a sealable plastic bag.

  3. Seal the bag and dispose of it in a trash located far away from your lab or supplies

  4. Clean and sanitize any surfaces or tools that may have come into contact with the contaminated syringe.

  5. Start over with a fresh syringe from a trusted source like us.

Uncontaminated Spore Syringe

How Contaminants Can Inhibit Mycelium Growth

For those interested in microscopy, it serves to understand the science of why contamination is your enemy. Contaminants in a spore syringe can inhibit the growth of mycelium, the thread-like structure that forms the basis of a mushroom's growth. Common contaminants include bacteria and mold, which can compete with the mycelium for nutrients and space. This can lead to slower growth or complete failure of your crop. With P. Cubensis mushrooms, the result is usually failure.

In conclusion, using a spore syringe is an essential skill for anyone interested in growing mushrooms at home, whether you are using a magic strain like Penis Envy or culinary like Shiitake. By following these simple instructions, you can ensure that your spore syringe is set up correctly and that you are working in a sterile environment. Remember to take your time and be careful when injecting the spores into the substrate, as any contamination can ruin your entire batch. With a little patience and practice, you can become an expert in using spore syringes and enjoy growing your own delicious mushrooms.

Disclaimer: We offer Psilocybin mushroom spores intended for microscopy and taxonomy purposes only. Images & Text provided are for informational and educational reference only and originate from cultivators and labs outside of the USA. Buying magic mushroom spores is legal in the United States. However, cultivation of magic mushrooms, which includes all psilocybin and psilocin containing mushroom species, is illegal in many countries, including the United States. Please check your local regulations to ensure that you are following the law properly.