The world of psilocybin mushrooms is flush with intriguing and often enigmatic strains, each offering unique attributes, histories, and mysteries. Among them, the B+ mushroom stands out not only for its obscure origins and potent effects, but also for the lively debates it stirs among cultivators and enthusiasts.
B+ mushrooms may not have the same cut-and-dry lineage as other popular Psilocybe cubensis strains, such as Penish Envy or Golden Teachers. As we’ll soon learn, the background of B+ mushrooms is a highly contested and unsolvable mystery.
Even the name of the strain, which many may read as “B-plus,” is a bit of a misnomer. The actual nomenclature used amongst growers is “B-Positive,” a more apt name for a beloved fungi known for providing potent, good vibes to those who indulge in its powers.
This positivity-inducing shroom type may share similar characteristics to other strains, but there is a shrouded story here that has befuddled mushroom cultivators and seasoned users alike.
Let’s peek behind the curtain and try to decipher the conundrum surrounding B+ mushrooms, along with the characteristic and chemical makeup that make this shroom well regarded as a positive experience for both consumers and cultivators alike.
What Are B+ Mushrooms? (Hint: B-plus mushrooms and B-positive mushrooms are the same thing.)
At first glance, it may be hard for the naked eye to identify any differences between B+ and other mushrooms in the cubensis ilk. Popular strains like Penis Envy and Golden Teachers have a traceable lineage dating back to the start of known shroom cultivation history. But there is some debate regarding the ancestry of the B+ mushroom.
How to Grow Shrooms Bundle
Take Both of Our Courses and Save $90!
Some cultivators believe that B+ is the result of mating Psilocybe cubensis with another mushroom strain. Ian Bollinger, co-founder of Hyphae Labs, a leader in psilocybin mushroom potency testing and research space, provided some insight into how the B+ was created and propagated throughout the psychedelic space.
“It’s supposed to be one of those wolf-dog type situations. You have two different species that are mating together,” Bollinger explained. “And so that’s what you’re looking at with B+; it’s not necessarily a cubensis strain, like Penis Envy, which has a lineage all the way back to Mex-Central American cultivation and culture.”
On Shroomery.org, one highly viewed post argues against the theory that this strain is a cross between a Psilocybe cubensis and another species. In this version of history, the confusion around the lineage of B+ stemmed from a renowned and mysterious cultivator named Mr. G, who some believe created this specific mushroom strain.
“There was a lot of controversy surrounding this mushroom for so long because Mr. G started off by telling everyone it was an azure/cubensis hybrid. Although at times it does grow some broadly umbonate caps like P. azurescens, it is just a unique cubensis,” the poster writes.
While B+ mushrooms may not have a universally agreed upon bloodline, the debate around it proves how little we know about certain strains, especially those that were created by cultivators. Bollinger acknowledges this great and constant unknown surrounding B+ and other strains.
“I don’t know if it’s true or not—a background of two different species coming together. With mushrooms, it’s not cut and dry,” he added.
B+ mushrooms are known for their large size, with some specimens reaching up to 30 centimeters in height. The average fruiting body is said to range between six to eight inches with extended caps that reach up to three inches in diameter.
Similar to other cubensis strains, the color of the caps can range from light to dark brown as they mature, and often exhibit a classic point or ‘nipple’ at the top center. The cap color may differ depending on the temperature of the grow environment, alongside other factors. B+ mushrooms tend to showcase a more golden-colored cap in warmer temperatures, while slightly cooler environments may yield a more caramel complexion.
The stem tends to be long, thick, and ivory or light brown in color, with a fibrous surface. The strain is renowned for its ability to fruit in conditions and substrates that typically pose problems for most other Psilocybe cubensis strains. According to various online cultivators, B+ shrooms tend to grow larger during later flushes, so size may vary depending on when they were yielded during the grow process.
B+ Mushroom Potency
Like any other mushroom strain, the potency of B+ will range by cultivator and batch. It depends on several factors, contingent on growing conditions and the external environment. That said, B+ has a reputation of packing a decent psilocybin-laden punch—but it can be hard to prove.
We can try to gauge the potency of the B+ mushroom by looking at results from the Oakland Hyphae Psilocybin Cup. The cultivator’s latest Fall 2022 Hyphae Cup Report, which includes many lab-tested mushroom strains, offers valuable insights into the specific potency of many strains, including three different Enigma mushrooms.
The detailed report featured a “B-Plus Anon” sample that contained 7.9 milligrams of psilocybin per gram. Compared to other samples tested in Hyphae Lab’s report, the potency of the B-Plus strain sits somewhere in the middle or slightly above the mean.
In their report, Hyphae Labs utilizes a dosage scale that includes a microdose range, recreational range, therapeutic range, and spiritual range for all use. While Bollinger acknowledges that comparative potency between strains is highly contingent on the cultivation process, he did provide some insight into how B-Plus may compare to another popular strain, Golden Teacher.
“I would argue Golden Teacher falls more on the microdose range, while B-Positive centers itself more solidly in the recreational side, but can be microdose it can be also slightly therapeutic,” he explained.
On community boards such as Shroomery and Reddit, B+ consumers have debated the true potency of this strain. As one Shroomery poster elegantly puts it, “people argue over the B+ potency but, I think it gives one of the warmest, visual, spiritual trips you can find.” When it comes to potency, others dismiss or depreciate the importance of the strain itself, using the common adage that “a cube is a cube.”
Growing B+ Mushrooms
Known as a great strain for beginners, B+ mushrooms are known by many to be fast colonizers and heavy yielders. They tend to do a solid job resisting contamination, and produce dense customers of pins and fruiting bodies. In a handful of online forums, this strain is recommended as a great introduction to mushroom cultivation.
Online cultivators claim that B+ spores grow unusually large compared to other strains. Interestingly, the largest mushrooms reportedly come during later flushes, and B+ is said to flush many times.
Similar to other P. cubensis strains, B+ tends to thrive on a substrate that resembles natural growing conditions and nutrient-rich materials. There are several options that are well-suited for growing this strain, including the popular PF Tek method, which utilizes brown rice flour and vermiculite as the substrate.
Growers could also leverage a coco coir and vermiculite-based substrate, both of which aids in moisture retention, as well as a manure-based substrate that combines sterilized horse or cow manure, along with straw, gypsum, and other additives. Regardless of the substrate you choose, it’s even more important to ensure cleanliness and a sterile grow environment to prevent contamination.
With B+ mushrooms, the ideal temperature during colonization ranges between 75-81°F (24-27°C), and should drop slightly to the 70-75°F (21-24°C) range when it reaches the fruiting phase. Growers should attempt to maintain a consistent humidity level between 90-95 percent during the fruiting stage.
B+ Mushroom Spores
Similar to other P. cubensis strains, the spore color for B+ genetics is usually purple-brown. In the United States, the sale of spores for microscopy purposes is legal, except in California, Idaho, and Georgia.
Mushroom spores are typically sold in a syringe, which contains millions of microscopic spores suspended in water. The syringe is used to inoculate a substrate, where the spores will germinate and begin to grow within the mycelium.
When searching for a reputable spore seller, looking for reliable sources with positive reviews and a history of quality products is essential; this ensures that you receive viable spores for your microscopy needs. As always, it’s important to research and be mindful of local laws around purchasing spores and cultivating mushrooms.