Maintaining a beautiful lawn is hard work. It's under constant bombardment from external threats, ranging from animals to weeds. Mushrooms and other kinds of fungus may eventually sprout up on the lawn. These growths tend to pop up out of nowhere. One day your lawn looks beautiful, the next morning you find mushrooms growing throughout the lawn. These mushrooms are off-putting and can be dangerous to anything that tries to consume the plant, such as pets and small children. That is why you need to know how to remove mushrooms in lawns.
What Causes Mushrooms to Grow in Your Lawn?
In order to understand the problem of having mushrooms in lawns, you first need to better understand the plant itself. Mushrooms are a fungus, but what you see popping up in your lawn is actually the final aspect of the plant. The button-top of the mushroom pops up through the lawn, but the main portion of the mushroom grows underground. In many ways, mushrooms are like small icebergs growing throughout your property. A larger portion of the fungus is clustered under the soil.
Mushrooms Aren't Bad
There are two reasons why you likely don't want mushrooms in lawn issues. First, the bulbs of the mushrooms are a bit offputting. The white and grays break up the beautiful green of your lawn causing it to look less than desirable. Potential consumption by a pet or young child is a secondary issue, although you can usually control this.
Beyond the look, mushrooms are beneficial to the overall ecosystem of your yard. The mushroom will help break down other organic material found in your yard, which is why mushrooms typically pop up around decaying items such as dead tree stumps or around compost piles. The mushrooms will break down that material into healthy nutrients.
So if you view mushrooms as weeds, you shouldn't. Unlike weeds, which choke off neighboring plants by having deeper roots and absorbing the moisture and nutrients in the soil, mushrooms provide nutrients and help surrounding plants.
What's Causing the Mushrooms?
Mushrooms sprout up when there is decaying material underground. If you recently removed a tree, or if there was a larger plant that died in the immediate area, the mushrooms may be sprouting up either on the stump of the dead plant, or more likely, the decaying roots.
Other times the mushrooms might grow up after you mow the lawn. If you don't collect grass clippings, the mushrooms can absorb some of the provided nutrients from the dead grass left behind. Basically there needs to be something decaying in the ground for the mushrooms to pop up. It doesn't need to be anything major, but it does need to be there.
Why Are They Forming in Your Yard?
Mushrooms are forming in your yard because of the additional nutrients present from whatever is decaying. When looking at the mushrooms in lawns issue, know that most mushrooms will not just pop up out of nowhere. There needs to be an abundance of nutrients in the soil for the mushrooms to grow. Different kinds of mushrooms are native to varying regions of the country, and some mushrooms need more nutrients than others. However, in general, the mushrooms are forming in your yard because of decomposing organic material.
Remedies to Remove and
Prevent Unwanted Mushrooms in Lawn
There are a handful of ways you can go about removing the mushrooms in lawn problem from your property. In reality, it isn't as much of an issue as it is a visual breakup on your property. If you need to have a beautifully maintained, green lawn, you'll want to remove the mushrooms. However, if you don't mind the mushrooms and you don't have pets or children who might be tempted to taste test the mushrooms, the spores are actually beneficial to your lawn.
Die on Its Own
Mushrooms are not like weeds. Weeds will continue to grow and spread throughout your property. Eventually ,if you're not careful, the weeds will fully take over your lawn until you don't have any grass left. Mushrooms are not like that. Mushrooms will be present as long as there is decomposing material present. If the mushrooms popped up because you mowed the lawn and the old grass is taking time to decompose, the mushrooms will die out within a matter of days.
If the mushrooms are growing out of dead roots or underground branches, the fungus may be present for longer than what you'd like. In this instance you'll want to take matters into your own hands with regards to the mushrooms in lawn problem.
Mow and Remove
If it's coming up time to mow your property, you won't need to do much of anything else other than mow the property. You may want to bag this up instead of letting the clippings remain. Leaving your glass clippings is healthy for your lawn, as the clipped grass will provide nutrients for the remaining grass. However, because you want to remove the white clumps from your property, it will be best to bag this time around.
In the future, if you want to use your grass clippings as in-place fertilizer there are a few steps you should follow to help avoid the development of mushrooms. Before setting out to mow the lawn, check the weather forecast. If it is supposed to rain later in the day, avoid mowing the lawn. Yes, you probably want to get it out of the way; but if you mow the lawn and leave the clippings for the rain, you will create perfect conditions for the mushrooms to grow, and the mushrooms don't take long to pop up, as you already know.
You should also avoid watering your lawn later in the day. If you already fertilize your lawn, you probably won't need to leave the grass clippings in the first place, but if you don't, just make sure to break up the watering and the mowing. You can water the lawn the next day after you mow. Giving some buffer room in between the activities will help prevent the further development of mushrooms.
If you're approaching a time to fertilize your lawn, you'll want to look for a nitrogen fertilizer that gives you between 1/2 to 3/4 pound of nitrogen per 1,000 square feet. This will give you an excellent fertilizer, and yet it will kill off the mushrooms. Do note that while this will remove the current mushrooms, if there is a massive decomposing object under the ground, the fertilizer won't prevent future mushrooms from growing up because of the decomposing object.
Sometimes mushrooms will sprout because of high moisture levels. When the soil is heavily compacted and it has been raining heavily for a while, you will see the mushrooms pop up, especially if you mow your lawn and it rains immediately after. If you water your lawn, it is a better idea to perform deeper waterings but less frequently. This will help the grass grow deeper, thicker roots. You should also look to aerate your lawn. Doing so helps prevent the growth of mushrooms.
Keep Your Trees and Bushes Trimmed
Most mushrooms like darker spaces. While this is not always 100 percent true for all mushrooms, the majority of mushrooms will develop in shadowy areas of your lawn. If the mushrooms do develop where the sunlight is, it's usually because it has been overcast for an extended period; and probably rainy as well. To help prevent this, you'll want to bring in more sunlight to your property. If a tree is throwing shade onto your property, you'll want to have it trimmed. This helps keep the tree healthy, removes illness areas, and improves the spread of sunshine on your lawn, reducing the potential of mushrooms in lawn problems.
Removing the Organic Material
Chances are, you don't want to dig up your lawn in order to prevent mushroom growth. However, if the mushrooms continually return despite your other attempts, you will need to consider this option. If there are large roots under ground, you will need to remove the organic material to prevent the mushrooms from growing back. While this is a more tedious process than some of the other ways of dealing with mushrooms, it may be the only option to prevent the mushrooms from growing back.
If you've ever dealt with mushrooms in lawns problems, you know these spore-based plants can pop up out of nowhere and spread throughout the property if nothing is done about them. It isn't difficult to rid your law of mushrooms, but it's better to take action against the mushrooms in your lawn sooner rather than later. Spore-based plants can spread rapidly, so should you identify mushrooms in your lawn, take these steps to both rid your current lawn of mushrooms and to safeguard your property into the future.