A lot of credit for the methods followed here are due to Bootleg Biology and Andrew “Gus” Addkison’s post on Craft Commander with a lot of inspiration also coming from a The Mad Fermentationist and the Jester King Blog.

Forage and propagate yeast

  • Collect edible flowers and place them directly from the plant into sterile centrifuge tubes with lids. Scissors and tweezers were used to prevent contamination from my skin. I used no rinse sanitiser but rinsed it off. Six samples collected per flower.


  • Prepare wort at 1.025-1.030 SG. 1g DME per 10ml. 30g used in 300ml. 100ml evaporated. With 200ml remaining the SG was 1056. To reach the preferred gravity:

56 x 200/30 = 373ml
To be cautious 150ml was added. SG was now 1033.
33 x 350/30 = 385ml

  • Wort cooled to room temperature and aerated. 25ml of wort added to each tube. Lids were fitted and each tube was shaken to further aerate.
  • Left in dark at room temperature and waited for bubbles and yeast sediment. Shake occasionally.
  • Once fermentation activity has finished the most lively and healthy smelling used to inoculate 3 conical Erlenmeyer flasks with 250ml of wort at 1.035 S.G.
  • Leave for two weeks to ferment out, blend the healthy smelling yeast sediment. If the pH is less than 4.7 botulism causing bacteria, which are rare, are inhibited and tasting it should be safe but do at own risk.
  • The quantity of yeast will be stepped up in quantity and alcohol tolerance with 500ml at SG 1.045.

Base beer brewing

my aim is to produce a saison type base beer.  The recipe for the initial brew is shown below. Generally, the strength will be around 6% ABV and the colour will be around 6-8 SRM.  I will tweak the quantities for pilsner, Vienna, wheat malt and honey and tweak, switch or omit the cara Munich. I only want a subtle hop character and may reduce the IBU further to encourage bacteria. I will use various European hops. For the control sample various commercial saison yeasts will be used.


OG 1.062      FG 1.012      ABV 6.4      SRM 8      IBU 20

  • 55% Pilsner malt
  • 25% Vienna malt
  • 10% Pale wheat malt
  • 8.5% Sussex honey
  • 1.5% Cara Munich (45L)
  • 27g East Kent Golding (AA 5.85%) at 60mins
  • 27g Saaz (AA 3.07%) at 20mins
  • 23g Styrian Golding (AA 2.00%) at 0mins
  • WLP 565 Belgian Saison Yeast

mash at 66C for 1 hour. Boil for 1 hour. Honey 5mins from end of boil.

Once cooled and aerated, single source wild yeast added to 5litres, blend of previous wild yeasts plus new single source added to 5litres, single source wild yeast and commercial yeast added to 5litres and just commercial yeast to 5litres as a benchmark.