Ss Brewing Technologies Giveaway!

Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Kombucha & Fermented Tea Forum > Splitting and growing additional scobies
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 09-24-2013, 04:03 AM   #1
scobysurfer
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Exeter, NH
Posts: 65
Liked 4 Times on 4 Posts
Likes Given: 18

Default Splitting and growing additional scobies

I noticed my scoby is starting to get too large in diameter for my gallon fermenting jar. Is it ok for me to basically just cut it in half?

My other question is, how is it that when I got my starter scoby that it produced another bigger scoby atop of it while the resulting scoby never produced children of its own?

__________________
scobysurfer is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-25-2013, 01:31 PM   #2
kyt
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
kyt's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Louisville, Kentucky
Posts: 441
Liked 42 Times on 40 Posts
Likes Given: 57

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by scobysurfer View Post
I noticed my scoby is starting to get too large in diameter for my gallon fermenting jar. Is it ok for me to basically just cut it in half?
Yes you can cut a scoby. However, the scoby will not outgrow the container.
You want the scoby to seal to the sides, this keeps your carbonation in, and foreign substances out. When the scoby does not cover the entire surface of the liquid, it would be like your skin not covering the entire surface of your body. That would be bad, right?

Quote:
Originally Posted by scobysurfer View Post
My other question is, how is it that when I got my starter scoby that it produced another bigger scoby atop of it while the resulting scoby never produced children of its own?
The first ferment was balanced and produced a baby.
The second ferment was probably not balanced as well.
Sometimes you can have a good brew and not produce a baby, it does happen. This should not be a common occurrence though.
Additionally, I have 3 jars that do not produce babies because of how I harvested the previous batch; the scobies stayed floating and continued to build instead of starting over with a new baby.
__________________
kyt is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-27-2013, 02:44 AM   #3
scobysurfer
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Exeter, NH
Posts: 65
Liked 4 Times on 4 Posts
Likes Given: 18

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by kyt View Post
The first ferment was balanced and produced a baby.
The second ferment was probably not balanced as well.
Sometimes you can have a good brew and not produce a baby, it does happen. This should not be a common occurrence though.
Additionally, I have 3 jars that do not produce babies because of how I harvested the previous batch; the scobies stayed floating and continued to build instead of starting over with a new baby.
Very interesting to learn. My first scoby was from Brooklyn Kombucha, it was about half the diameter of the container and it produced a baby which eventually outgrew its mother! I ended up giving the mother to a friend and have kept the baby which is now 5 batches big!

Yes, so now my scoby just grows as opposed to producing a baby. What exactly do you mean by balanced?
__________________
scobysurfer is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-27-2013, 11:49 AM   #4
kyt
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
kyt's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Louisville, Kentucky
Posts: 441
Liked 42 Times on 40 Posts
Likes Given: 57

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by scobysurfer View Post
Yes, so now my scoby just grows as opposed to producing a baby. What exactly do you mean by balanced?
Kombucha is an amalgamation of yeast and bacteria. It's kind of like brewing beer and vinegar at the same time (but not exactly).
There needs to be a balance between them.

Here's a page with a long list of symptoms/conditions and how to alter the balance of the brew.

http://users.bestweb.net/~om/kombucha_balance/

There's a lot of useful tips on there; some things I don't completely agree with.

“Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is specifically your own.”
― Bruce Lee
__________________
kyt is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-27-2013, 04:06 PM   #5
saramc
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: suburb of Louisville, KY
Posts: 1,743
Liked 146 Times on 132 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

A scoby once submerged does not continue to grow. A new scoby will only develop on the surface. Break the surface tension and the layer likely sinks, sometimes it does not, but if it does it typically ends up adhering to the mother. People think the mother has grown but it has not, it just has baby layers sinking and attaching. Same thing happens when the mother stays floating, a new baby forms on surface and just adheres to the mother below it. Every layer you can pull away in a scoby was at one time a separate scoby. There are instances when your mother makes great kombucha but a new scoby fails to develop, no film, nothing--this is caused by a missing organism.

I can start a one gallon batch, a 7" wide jug, by using just a 3" diameter 1/8-1/4" thick scoby. A new scoby forms and my booch is well balanced. I have found no correlation between the size of scoby and ferment time & taste of my finished product.

__________________

Motto: quel che sara sara

saramc is offline
kyt Likes This 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-15-2013, 12:59 AM   #6
scobysurfer
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Exeter, NH
Posts: 65
Liked 4 Times on 4 Posts
Likes Given: 18

Default

This is the result when I pulled 2 "layers" from my 5-batch scoby apart:



Do you think I should throw these scoby pieces back on top of the one intact scoby that remained, or should I just toss them out? The pieces are noticeably a little whiter and harder to the touch than the intact scoby.

Needless to say, it was a bad idea. I'd like to know if anybody else has had any success in extracting additional scobys from an existing one? And if so, how did you do it?

kyt - you mention "cutting" the scoby, yet in the same post stress that the scoby should seal the container. Is that really a viable option?

__________________
scobysurfer is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-15-2013, 01:26 AM   #7
kyt
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
kyt's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Louisville, Kentucky
Posts: 441
Liked 42 Times on 40 Posts
Likes Given: 57

Default

The SCOBY is not a necessary component for fermentation. It isn't even necessary to start a batch. If you threw away all of your SCOBYs you should grow a replacement one. The new "baby" will seal the surface. Like Sara says, if you break the surface that new baby may fall, but you should still grow another one to replace that one. Its like a skin the bacteria form as a protective barrier.
Having sufficient starter solution, with plenty of viable microbial cells, is far more important than the SCOBY.

__________________
  • Philosopher's Stone - on-tap
  • Oatmeal Raisin Cookie - on-tap
kyt is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply



Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Looking for Additional IPA Tips Joshone Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 4 05-14-2013 09:59 PM
Additional Dry Hopping 2PintsLow Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 6 02-16-2012 05:55 AM
Hop growing schedule and year-round growing in CA? tekhna Hops Growing 8 11-23-2009 12:40 AM
What does additional malt with a kit do exactly? Zurd Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 7 10-25-2007 04:25 PM
Additional use for Star San abracadabra Equipment/Sanitation 2 07-06-2007 02:14 AM