Collage of Book with Variety of Mushrooms Overlay and Colorful Gradient Background

The Best Books About Growing Psychedelic Mushrooms

These books have enabled readers to become amateur mycologists and grow their own shrooms at home.

DoubleBlind Mag

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Updated June 12, 2024

Disclaimer: this article covers a legal theme.

Magic mushrooms are incredibly diverse in nature and pop up across large areas of the world when they’re in season. But there is a looming uncertainty around whether natural supplies can meet the soaring (ahem, mushrooming) demand for psilocybin-fueled inner growth and play. 

To aid in the pursuit of psychedelic self-sufficiency, we’ve compiled a list of the best magic mushroom growing books. Little was known about the cultivation of fungi only decades ago, but these how-to-grow treasures enable readers to become amateur mycologists and conjure a whole host of varieties from the classic Psilocybe cubensis variety to the elusive azurescens in the comfort of their homes. 

Mushroom Cultivator: A Practical Guide to Growing Mushrooms at Home, by Paul Stamets and Jeff Chilton

Mushroom Cultivator: A Practical Guide to Growing Mushrooms at Home, by Paul Stamets and Jeff Chilton Book Cover

The publication of this extensive book, in 1983, was celebrated by Dr. Andrew Weil in its foreword as “a milestone in the new awareness of mushrooms” and “the cause of growing at home” for all kinds of mushrooms, including those of the mind-bending, psilocybe variety. It notes that professional cultivators had long guarded their methods, but that all changed from the early 1980s onwards as the west shedded its mycophobia. The text, which some say is too advanced for beginners, includes detailed growth requirements for some 15 species and a how-to on constructing mushroom growing rooms. 

READ: A Mycologist’s Guide to the PF Tek Method

The Psilocybin Mushroom Bible by Dr. K Mandrake and Virginia Haze

The Psilocybin Mushroom Bible by Dr. K Mandrake Book Cover

This thoroughly illustrated 2016 opus, now in its second expanded edition released in 2024, focuses on a range of psilocybin-containing mushrooms from the widely cultivated Psilocybe cubensis to other interesting species like truffle producers and wood-loving Psilocybes. The book takes budding mycophiles on a journey from sourcing spores, to making hardware, to drying and consuming the resultant mushrooms. Authored by two regular DoubleBlind contributors, it has received praise for its step-by-step photo series on the growth processes of different species and claims to be “hands down the largest and most comprehensive book ever written on the subject.”

Psilocybin: Magic Mushroom Grower’s Guide: A Handbook for Psilocybin Enthusiasts by Terrence and Dennis McKenna

Psilocybin: Magic Mushroom Grower's Guide: A Handbook for Psilocybin Enthusiasts by Terrence and Dennis McKenna Book Cover

This slim volume and classic home cultivation manual was originally published in 1976 by the late Terrence McKenna and his brother Dennis. They wrote under pseudonyms—such were the times when a countercultural text like this was genuinely revolutionary—and documented the best known growing techniques of that era. Much has changed in the last half century, but the advent of radically more modern cultivation methods do not eclipse the book’s cultural impact, a publishers’ note says. Expect to find how-to guides interspersed with mystical asides and “Food of the Gods” speculation.

READ: How to Identify Magic Mushrooms: Step-by-Step

Magic Mushroom Growers Guide: Simple Steps to Bulk Cultivation by Principium Quaesitor 

Mushroom Growers Guide: Simple Steps to Bulk Cultivation by Principle Quaesitor Book Cover

Interested in bulk cultivation? This is the one for you. The book, courtesy of the Psychonautical Society’s lead researcher, writing under a pseudonym in 2015, provides a simple step-by-step guide to the process alongside hundreds of photos and diagrams. Suggesting the use of DIY materials wherever possible, the book promises a “rapid progression” from the basics to advanced methods such as cloning with agar. Some of its hundreds of reviews praise the book for helping growers to avoid contamination, a hazard especially for novice growers.

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Radical Mycology by Peter McCoy

This weighty 672-page tome is not for the faint hearted. A new classic of the genre, published in 2016 after the success of a zine released through the Spore Liberation Front, it was characterized by “a call to sporulate” all kinds of mushrooms from juicy chanterelles to their visionary cousins, both indoors and out. The book weaves a compelling treatise on fungal biology and the history of psychoactive mushrooms with how to grow “lab-quality” toadstools using recycled materials.

Radical Mycology by Peter McCoy Book Cover
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DoubleBlind is a trusted resource for news, evidence-based education, and reporting on psychedelics. We work with leading medical professionals, scientific researchers, journalists, mycologists, indigenous stewards, and cultural pioneers. Read about our editorial policy and fact-checking process here.

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DoubleBlind Magazine does not encourage or condone any illegal activities, including but not limited to the use of illegal substances. We do not provide mental health, clinical, or medical services. We are not a substitute for medical, psychological, or psychiatric diagnosis, treatment, or advice. If you are in a crisis or if you or any other person may be in danger or experiencing a mental health emergency, immediately call 911 or your local emergency resources. If you are considering suicide, please call 988 to connect with the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

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