This week I interview self-proclaimed mushroom nerd, William Padilla-Brown. In this fascinating interview, we talk about how he continually pushes the boundaries of mycology, cultivates and value-adds cordyceps, the opportunity for artisan mushroom growing, and what he’s up to with spirulina.

In This Episode:

>> How learning about permaculture got him into growing mushrooms

>> How his passion is to experiment with genetic expression of plants and fungi

>> The difference between growing mushrooms in controlled environments vs. outdoor cultivation

>> William’s mushroom mentors

Quotes from the episode:

“I farm to get close to the source of things, to know what I’m made of…”

“The hardest thing I’ve done as a farmer was to become a farmer – there was no insurance that becoming a farmer would ensure financial stability”

About the Guest

William Padilla-Brown had the opportunity to grow up traveling, living in England, Taiwan, Mexico, New York he now is back in his hometown of New Cumberland, PA. He is a social entrepreneur, citizen scientist, mycologist, amateur phycologist, urban shaman, poet and father to his beloved 3-year old son, Leo. Leaving high school at age 16, Will pursued a non-traditional, independent approach to learning and actively promotes alternative education. He holds Permaculture Design Certificates from
Susquehanna Permaculture and NGOZI. In 2014, he established Community Compassion, a nonprofit focused on radical sustainability, based in New Cumberland, PA.

In 2015 he founded MycoSymbiotics LLC – a mycological research and mushroom production business. He has raised over 30 types of mushrooms and 6 types of algae. He is driving mycological research in the areas of food production, mycoremediation, and medicinal value. Will educates children and adults alike about topics ranging from nutrition to mushroom cultivation, having led workshops and various programs all over the country. Will is proud to be a contributing editor for Fungi Magazine, the foremost Mycological periodical.

Resources and Mentors that William Mentioned

Wilson Alvarez, Ben Weiss and Paul Stamets

Organic Growers School

Susquehanna Permaculture

William’s YouTube Channel


Telluride Mushroom Festival

Fantastic Fungi book featuring Paul Stamets, Michael Pollan, William Padilla-Brown