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Mushrooms & Moss



Mushrooms usually occur in lawns after prolonged periods of wet weather. This often indicates the presence of decaying organic matter in the soil such as old tree roots, stumps or construction debris. Most mushrooms cause no damage to lawns and they will disappear when the weather conditions and soil dry out. If they grow in circles of dark grass called “fairy rings”, they may injure the turf by making it impervious to water. There is no effective chemical control for mushrooms. However, if you feel they are poisonous or unsightly, simply remove them with a rake.



Moss is a persistent weed that establishes itself in areas where thin and weak turf exists, as the result of environmental conditions such as shade, shallow gravelly soils, excessive moisture, low fertility or acidic soils. Any of these conditions alone or in combination can allow for moss to establish itself.

To permanently eradicate moss, one needs to first establish the cause of its presence. If it is caused by heavy shade or moist areas, removing trees or tree limbs will allow more sunlight and air circulation to stimulate better turf growth. Additional drainage may be necessary in areas that stay excessively wet. For acidic soil, lime will raise soil ph levels closer to neutral where in turf grows best. When seeding, use fine fescue in shaded areas that are well drained. Rough Kentucky bluegrass is better adapted to shaded, moist areas. Please note that all grass types need a certain amount of sunlight to survive. Chemical controls for moss exist but should only be used after all the limiting factors have been corrected. Unfortunately, controls for moss can burn surrounding desirable turf.

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