Toadstools in your lawn

20th Aug 2015

Toadstools and mushrooms occur naturally and may appear on any area of a lawn, if certain weather and ground conditions are present.

They are part of the natural environment, and are generally a sign of a healthy, fertile lawn and soil. They only live for a short amount of time and are not too problematic.

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The fungi that produce toadstools can recycle dead plant material and will grow very fine threads called mycelium. Upon close inspection, you can sometimes see mycelium on the leaves of turf. It looks like cotton and disappear as it dries.

Toadstools or mushrooms most commonly appear when the weather is warm and humid, and will usually disappear within a few weeks or when weather conditions change.

The type usually seen on new lawns are harmless, however, humans or animals shouldn’t eat them as some are poisonous.

Why do toadstools grow in my lawn?

Toadstools can appear in established turf due to the soil environment in which they live. Common causes include the existence of organic debris under the lawn or active spores waiting for the right conditions.

How do we treat mushrooms and toadstools?

To identify whether mushrooms and toadstools are going to appear in a lawn, a knife can be used to check under the buried debris for infected areas.

To reduce the chances of them appearing, lawns should be scarified regularly. This removes thatch and debris underneath, which are the main causes of mushroom and toadstool growth. They should also be aerated to oxygenate the soil profile and drain water from the surface.

Toadstools can be removed by hand or by brushing them off. Alternatively, they can be cut with a lawn mower with a grass box attached to collect them in. Rotary mowers are usually better for this task.

If mushrooms appear in a circle or arc shape as in the picture below, this is indicative of Fairy Ring, a common turfgrass disease. Ask your local Lawn Master outlet for help with identification and management.

 

 

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