Fresh Mushrooms In Bloom

Located in Brimfield, Bloom Shroomery is a family business growing colorful gourmet mushrooms.

Bloom Shroomery

by Jonathan Wright

Unique to the region, Bloom Shroomery specializes in cultivating colorful gourmet mushrooms, including oysters, shiitake, lions mane, and chestnuts. “We love shrooms!” explains Pat Connolly, who runs the operation with his wife Lisa. Frustrated by the lack of fresh local mushrooms in the area, the couple decided to grow their own. “It doesn’t take much space to grow large quantities of mushrooms, so we are able to do it—just the two of us—out of our home.”

The move was a game-changer for the Connollys. Not only did it bring a wide variety of high-quality, tasty mushrooms to their own dinner plates, word of mouth spread quickly among family and friends. As they increased production to meet demand, the couple set up a booth at the Peoria RiverFront Market, where their shrooms have been rapturously received. “We are there every Saturday morning [during market season] and we make deliveries to Sous Chef during the week,” Lisa explains. “We also take orders for delivery on Facebook and Instagram and do porch pickup at our home in Brimfield.”

With the 2021 growing season underway, they anticipate their first harvest in mid to late April. In the long term, a farm property down the road offers plenty of room for expansion. “We are looking into putting up a couple of buildings, as well as purchasing equipment that would allow us to grow more commercially,” Lisa explains. “Eventually when our harvests increase, we would like to get into making powdered supplements and tinctures of the more medicinal mushroom varieties.” facebook.com/bloomshroomery PM

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