Return to the Soil Forum | Post a Follow-Up

 o
mulch fungus (photos)

Posted by msjay2u 7 (My Page) on
Sat, Jun 2, 12 at 9:52

I had some trees cut down last spring and I asked the guy to leave the wood chippings. It was a huge pile as it represented 3 trees. The next couple of days the mound started smoking so I figured that it was heating up. In fact I was a bit afraid of it combusting. LOL.
The tree guy told me not to use it because he said it will kill my plants. I asked about it on here and was told wait a couple of weeks and it should be fine. That's what I did. I used all of the chippings as mulch topped by 9 more yards of purchased mulch. I noticed that my plants did not grow like they usually do and my weeping cherry tree that I had just planted died.
Fast forward to this year. Planting my annuals and when I was going through the layers of mulch I was a little surprised to see this
Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App
I thought it was gnat webs so I mixed the mulch up, planted what I was planting, sprayed bug spray and called it a day.
My plants are growing EXTREMELY slow, and some have died.
Since then I noticed this on the ground
Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App
It appears one day and is gone the next. Now this morning I noticed this on a tree
Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App
What the heck is this mess and what should I do about it?

I read on the Internet to sprinkle some baking soda on it. I have not tried that yet

Thank you


Follow-Up Postings:

 o
RE: mulch fungus (photos)

..
Looks like slime molds to me. I don't know much about them. I've seen the white stuff and the yellow stuff. My favorite was the dog vomit slime mold I've found on the lawn from time to time. It's amazing how much it looks just like dog vomit.

I haven't seen any problems associated with the molds I've seen in my rather dry climate. Your milage may vary.

to sense
..


 o
RE: mulch fungus (photos)

They are nice. Don't hurt them. They will go away without any bother. Baking soda will add sodium (salt) to your soil and be bad for your garden. Look at the box of baking soda arm and hammer, it says don't take if you are on a sodium restricted diet.

Here is a link that might be useful: My fungus like yours


 o
RE: mulch fungus (photos)

It's too bad you didn't get advice to let the piled-up fresh wood chips to sit a bit longer. Hot mulch is a sign that it is decomposing rapidly. In a pile, the hot, humid conditions would help it decompose the fastest.

If that were my garden beds, I would consider raking the wood chips off, laying down some good commercial compost, and then laying the wood chips on top of that.

And those look like slime molds. They are alarming looking, but seem to be harmless. Even in my dry climate, they appear on my garden beds where I have applied home-made compost. I haven't seen any evidence that they are a risk to my plants.

Good luck.


 o
RE: mulch fungus (photos)

Fungus is not necessarily a bad thing and seeing some does not indicate the presence of Fungus Gnats or any other insect pest, although they may also be present. Plants need fungi as well as bacteria to live just as you do.
Slime molds can be washed away, if necessary, but like the fungi you found they are there to aid in digesting your woody mulch and are only disgusting looking and not harmful.


 o
RE: mulch fungus (photos)

The first picture is normal, it is part of the decomposing process for the mulch, I get it all of the time. No insecticides needed.

I also get the occasional mushroom and the slime mold. I just leave them be, they tend to go away after a few days. Just nature in progress.


 o
RE: mulch fungus (photos)

the 'dog barf fungus' is amazing. Sometimes you get different colors then just the yellow. Below are some timelapse videos. It interesting since you can see in you last photo of it on your tree, that it "climbed/grew" up the trunk from the mulch.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/selago/5858382547/
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pTcv_E7LhpM&feature=relmfu
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pTcv_E7LhpM&feature=relmfu
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b67-otm6nuM


 o
RE: mulch fungus (photos)

They slime molds that you pictured are not harmful, just a sign that the wood is decaying. I get them in my mulch on occasion too. I do nothing and they go away.


 o
RE: mulch fungus (photos)

ditto, this stuff helps break down the wood faster.
Just move it away from touching your plants.
Also maybe add a more nitrogen fertilizer to your plants. They might be growing slow because of N deficiency.
I planted in hugelkultur beds with heavy wood chip & pine needle mulch. Plants doing excellent. Did need to add extra fertilizer though.


 o
RE: mulch fungus (photos)

thank you everyone I have left it alone. I am glad I am not the only one who thought that looked like dog vomit. LOL The first time I saw it I thought a deer came in and vomited all over my flower bed. silly me.

I will fertilize. and if it is decomposing I fertilize then the soil should be really rich next year!


 o
Physan 20

I found something that will get rid of mushrooms if they are harmful ones, and you are worried your dog will eat them. It happened to my dog. He ate these and almost died.
Physan 20 is the name you can get in ebay or amazon.

Here is a link that might be useful: I took a photo before he took a bite


 o
RE: mulch fungus (photos)

I have this fungus in all of my landscape beds, and I have lots. The guy at the nursery said it is because the mulch was not aged enough. Every time I water or it rains I get more. Will it ever go away,ever?? Also if you spray water on it, a big cloud of red dust flies up. Is this harmful? I do not like it. Anyone have experience with this?


 o
RE: mulch fungus (photos)

I love these slime mold "freak outs." Admittedly they look nasty but as has been stated do little if no harm. Just doing their environmental job. However, perhaps we now have a new moniker for "dog vomit" - for those in rural or semi-rural areas, "deer vomit." Never seen deer vomit, but sounds reasonable...
hortster


 o
RE: mulch fungus (photos)

lindaw, your nursery guy knows not what he is talking about. You will seldom see mushrooms, molds, or the slime molds appear until the mulch has been down for some time since it takes time for the fungi to develop and grow.
The "cloud" you see fly up when you water is spores of that fungi that you are scattering around to introduce new colonies somewhere.


 o
RE: mulch fungus (photos)

kimmsr, is the cloud of spores a health issue?


 o
RE: mulch fungus (photos)

  • Posted by corrine1 7b Pacific Northwest (My Page) on
    Sat, Jun 23, 12 at 20:24

It will go away on it's own or you can rake to break it up.

Last year our parents had it midsummer after we hauled in mulch to spread on their gardens in April. Admittedly the dog vomit fungus is disgusting, but nothing a little bit or raking didn't cure. No plants were bothered by it and the garden looks better than ever now that it's composted a bit further.

Grandpa liked how we gathered & spread free coffee grounds from the nearby coffee shop so much that he's been regularly going there now to get his own bucket or 2 full for garden mulching. It blends in well with the wood and helps conserve moisture. They're located in a drier part of our state with less than 20 inches of rain a year and almost none in the summer months. With the community well as their water source they do not water other than a few containers, so mulching over the past several years has made a big difference in their gardens in terms of growth & blooming. They think we snuck something else in, but it was only the mulch from the wood chippers and coffee grounds along with some kitchen waste while we're there.


 o
RE: mulch fungus (photos)

Why does everybody have to pick on fungus? If your flowers were that color they'd be beautiful. I think your deer vomit is pretty! I may grow some myself lol. It's best not to breath mushrooms spores though. Some are worse than others but to be same I try not to stick my face in any cloud of spores. Hit some with my mower yesterday and was sneezing all night.


 o
RE: mulch fungus (photos)

The role of fungi in ecosystems is underappreciated. I think they have a bad reputation that is undeserved. It's somewhat understandable: mold and mildew in the house is obviously not a good thing, and of course there are toxic mushrooms.

But it's kind of like saying there are bacteria that can cause disease, so we should worry about bacteria in the garden. Which is ludicrous since there are like 100 million bacteria in a half teaspoon of soil, and if they weren't there, nothing would grow. The same goes for fungi, actually.

There's just a lot more education that needs to happen in relation to fungi, I guess.


 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!


Return to the Soil Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.


Learn more about in-text links on this page here