Introduction: Making Ink From Mushrooms

Ok, so it's not the most vital survival skill (making ink) but it's easy to learn and something most people don't know how to do. Shaggy Mane Inky Caps are edible (at the "all white" stage) and useful. The ink can be used for education, writing messages, deciphering code, documenting history, transferring ownership (a living will or deed to a property), and keeping inventory. The ink costs nothing to make and only two items are needed to utilize it properly, a container to hold the ink and a writing instrument such as a quill or paintbrush. Since it has so many uses and little to no cost, it's a great bartering resource.

Step 1: Forage for Shaggy Mane Inky Cap Mushrooms

They are more common than you might think. Above are three pictures of the Shaggy Mane as it cycles through its life-span. They grow all over the world and can be found in grassy meadows, forests, and even in your backyard (that's where I first discovered them). They grow between the months of April through October.

Step 2: Pick a Half Dozen

Pick 6 to 12 Shaggy Mane mushrooms and place in a container.

Step 3: Wait at Least 12 Hours

After about 12 hours you can start straining the mushrooms for ink. If you don't want to mess with straining, it takes about two weeks for half a dozen mushrooms to completely dissolve into ink.

Step 4: Add Melaleuca Oil

Decaying mushrooms start to smell after several days. Adding a couple of drops of Melaleuca essential oil helps to eliminate the smell. Thyme or Oregano oil works well too.

Step 5: All Done!

You're now self sufficient at making ink.

Use a quill (http://amzn.to/2eM33L2) or paint brush to start writing.

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Comments

author
ThomasK19 (author)2016-11-30

I just thought those mushrooms got their name from the black color they take when degrading, but never that you really can make ink from them! One never stops learning. Anyhow, I prefer to eat them before they get black xD

author
Joerg Engels (author)2016-11-11

Wait. You found them in MY backyard?

author
Anirudh Ralhan (author)2016-11-10

A really creative method of making ink :D

author
tomatoskins (author)2016-11-09

Interesting! So the mushrooms just decompose into ink? I know you said it smells bad, that's understand able, but does the ink mold or anything after a while?

author

When I was doing research on how to make it, I came across articles that mention adding ingredients like salt or Thyme Oil to preserve it and keep it from going bad. It is said to last over a year.

author
BunceyTheInbred (author)2016-11-09

I love your pen in the pictures. Where did you get it?

author

I got the pen from Amazon. I sure love it:) Here is a link to it: http://amzn.to/2fzrABA

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