How To Prevent Mold In Plant Soil
The best way to deal with any mold contamination in houseplant soil is to prevent it in the first place. Most types of white furry fungus on houseplant soil are preventable with proper watering techniques and enough sunlight. Even growing plants under artificial lights can help kill plant mold.
Lets look at the best ways to prevent mold from causing ugly white fuzz on your houseplants.
More Tips To Prevent Potting Soil From Growing New Mold
When I had mold on my potting soil, I tried a lot of things and at one point, I just wanted to throw in the towel. However, I found that increasing the airflow and drying out the surface of the soil was the solution that worked best for me.
Ideally, performing all of these options at once is the best choice in fighting the mold: watering only when dry, improving drainage, and increasing airflow and sunlight. If this doesnt work, repotting can be a last-ditch effort.
If youve tried the above options and nothing is working for you, or if youd like some creative solutions, I have a few more ideas for you. Here are some other ways you can kill and prevent potting soil from growing new mold.
- Baking soda
Ive used a homemade vinegar spray to kill mold before, but it typically doesnt stay dead for long. For my moldy compost bin, I ended up using the vinegar spray to initially kill the mold and then placed a fan pointed at the top of the soil. This worked in just one day and the mold hasnt been back since. However, if youre using vinegar on your potted plants soil, know that too much vinegar can kill the plants, so be careful when trying this as a solution.
Baking soda is great at drying materials out , and sprinkling a little bit on the mold can dry it out and kill it. Again, if the soil is constantly wet, baking soda wont do much good. You should address the wetness first as its most likely the primary cause of the mold.
How Can You Tell The Difference Between Mold And Bacteria
Multi*celled, layered filaments form Moulds larger, more complex than fibres. Using an eye for a long time, they can produce massed filaments whose outline can be seen to an inch by inch. A wall surface might, for instance, grow mould as a result of this. Compared to bacteria, they are simpler and smaller.
Recommended Reading: Getting Mildew Off Leather
How To Prevent Mold In Garage
In order to prevent water from getting in your garage and creating haven-like conditions for mold to settle in, its important to seal garage doors well. Very rarely does garage door weather-stripping rest tightly against the garage frame, allowing water to seep inside the garage from outside, particularly in unfriendly weather conditions. Once water is in, you have limited time to prevent problems you may experience from wet things turning into mold habitats.
Water intrusion and mold growth not only damage the structure of the garage and home in general, but they also negatively affect the vehicles parked inside. The best thing you can do to protect yourself from these negative effects is to take preventive measures against water intrusion to prevent mold growth and any further damage. Mold prevention is better than remediation.
In this article you can read 7 tips to help you deal with water in order to prevent mold growth inside your garage:
Repot Houseplants To Get Rid Of Mold On Soil
It makes sense to repot houseplants if any kind of mold or fungal growth is on or in plant soil. Repotting plants to remove mold gives you a fresh start with your plant. Replacing contaminated soil with sterile soil will immediately get rid of the white stuff and help prevent it from returning.
Of course, you need to ensure that you dont transfer fungus spores to the new pot. Before repotting, sterilize all equipment you plan to usepruning shears, knives, or other implements. So how should you repot your indoor plant to eradicate soil mold?
Heres how to repot your plant to get rid of mold on soil:
- Use a damp cloth to remove any signs of white fuzz thats on plant leaves or stems.
- Carefully remove the plant from its container and empty all the soil into a plastic bag.
- Get rid of all the dirt from the roots by putting under running water.
- Check the roots for any sign of disease and prune as necessary with sterile shears.
- Take a sterile pot and fill it one-third full with the appropriate sterile potting soil.
- Put the plant in the container and make sure its at the same growing height as before.
- Fill the pot with the remaining soil and thoroughly water.
- Water your plant again when the top 1 has dried out.
Recommended Reading: How To Fix Mold On Ceiling
How To Prevent Mold On Plants
Commonly, white dusty mold on your plants soil is caused by prolonged moisture and poor drainage. You can prevent this mold from happening by making sure you follow the steps below:
- Water early in the morning so your plants have time to dry out throughout the day
- Use a container with good drainage
- Use a quality potting mix thats sterilized
- Water only when needed
How To Prevent Mold On Soil
1. The first step in preventing mold on houseplant soil is to start with new, sterile soil. While a lot of soil will claim to be sterilized, I never trust it. So, I sterilize any soil I will using.
Sterilizing soil can be done several ways but I use the oven method. Put soil in an oven safe container. You typically want to go 4 inches deep. Cover with foil. Place a meat thermometer into the center and bake at 180-200 F. for at least 30 minutes, or when soil temp reaches 180 F. . Anything higher than that can produce toxins. Remove from oven and allow to cool, leaving the foil in place until ready to use.
2. Do not water your houseplant unless the soil is dry. When you keep plant soil moist, it allows mold to grow. Allowing the soil to dry out between waterings helps prevent soil mold from growing.
3. Never let plants sit in saucers full of water.
4. Air circulation in your home is key to mold prevention period. It also really helps prevent mold on soil if you have good air circulation in rooms with houseplants.
5. Make sure your soil gets a hit of sun daily. All houseplants need light and if possible, try to get the sunlight onto the soil as well.
6. Remove dead leaves immediately. Decomposing leaves are food for mold and create an environment conducive to quick mold growth. Also, be sure to trim dead parts off of plants.
7. Dust your houseplants regularly. Mold spores travel in dust so keeping dust to a minimum is important.
Read Also: How To Clean Mold Off Bathroom Ceiling
Is Mold In Plant Soil Harmful
All soil has fungal spores. Such is the nature of soil.Its part of how soil is made in the first place.
As such, mold in plant soil doesnt always harm theplant. In nature, it actually is part of the life cycle of plants. However, moldysoil might also be a sign that your plant is not getting what it needs in termsof sunlight, air circulation, and moisture. The mold might also be competingfor nutrition with your plant.
The real issue is when the mold begins to grow on theplant. At that point, the health of the plant is very compromised.
Now mold in plant soil is a different story for humans. For some individuals, it can cause serious health problems. For many people, it will produce allergic reactions such as sneezing, congestion, itchy eyes, skin irritations. In addition, the mold spores can go airborne and settle elsewhere in your home where they can grow and cause a much bigger mold problem. It is never a good idea to ignore mold in plant soil.
Seal And Discard Old Potting Soil
Unfortunately, you cannot hold onto bags of potting soil forever. If you have open bags of potting soil in your garden shed or outside, you can expect pathogens such as fungi, and insects to find their way into it. When you repot new plants with it, they can become contaminated with the mold or fungus thats now living in the soil.
Sealing your potting medium bags tightly is essential to ensure that the contents are protected. That being said, potting soil should only be kept for 1 to 2 years and no longer. After this time, it starts to break down and loses its ability to retain moisture while draining correctly.
Also Check: How To Remove Black Mold From Ceiling
Mold On My Soil What Is It Why Is It There & What Do I Do
Youre a small-space gardener with a few potted plants. You love your plants – who doesnt? – and you want to see them thrive.
There you are, minding your own business when BLAM! – you notice that there is some mold growing on the surface of your soil.
Next step is, obviously, googling what in the Sam Hill is wrong with your tiny garden.
Well, first thing to keep in mind: dont panic! The mold you see growing there is not dangerous, not usually allergenic, and is actually a good thing for your plants and soil. If you require more convincing, read on!
Note:Experiencing other troubleshooting issues with your plants? Check outEpic Gardening’s Plant Problemsfor some top tips!
How To Get Rid Of Mold On Plant Soil:
Here are some ideas that will help deter molds and promote healthy plants.
Molds on the soil of plants may be harmless to plants, and mostly people, but it is still unsightly. Even more important, depending on the plants you grow, molds may indicate a need to change your plant management methods.
Are your plants healthy? OR are Drooping yellowing leaves a problem for some of your plants with moldy soil?
Read Also: How To Kill Mold In Basement
Why Mold Grows On Potting Soil
Mold is a vital part of nature as its job is to decompose matter in the soil.Almost all soils will have mold spores of some kind. The only exception to this is if youre using sterilized soil. By providing a consistently wet growing medium, like potting soil, mold will likely grow and will be hard to kill.
Like mosquitos, it can be hard to think that mold has a place in the circle of life . Still, it can be helpful to know that mold is a perfectly normal and helpful occurrence in nature.
Mold typically occurs on wet soil and is designed to decompose organic soil matter, further breaking down the nutrients into smaller pieces. These smaller nutrients can be used by beneficial microbes and better absorbed by the roots of plants. In short, mold helps provide nutrients for your potted plants!
By decomposing organic matter, molds play a big part in material biodegradation, enabling decay and rot necessary in all ecosystems.
However, even though mold in the wild is good, it doesnt mean that it should be allowed to grow indoors. This can pose risks to your plant .
What Should I Do About The Mold
Well, thats entirely up to you. Do you care if theres a bit of white fuzz on top of your soil? If not, then go ahead and let Mother Nature get on with it. Once the biomatter is completely decomposed in your soil, that mold will eventually disappear!
But if it bothers you, or youre concerned about the spores potentially irritating an existing asthma or bronchial sensitivity, then fixing the issue is fairly straightforward.
Also Check: Mold Allergy Skin Rash
Can Mold Be Washed Out Of Clothes
Various methods can be used to remove mold. Try hand washing, dry cleaning or using a machine to clean your clothes. Borax, baking soda, tea tree oil or using hydrogen peroxide are common and natural ways of killing the spores. Alternatively, bleach and regular mold-killing detergents can also be used.
Cut Off Affected Parts Of The Plant
If the mold is a type that is infecting the foliage and causing damage, you need to cut off the infected parts. The infected leaves and branches may have turned yellow, brown, or black due to the mold.
I suggest using a that is soaked in rubbing alcohol when youre cutting the infected parts. This will prevent the spores from spreading to other parts or other plants.
Also Check: Diy Basement Mold Removal
What Is Mold And What Does It Look Like On Houseplants
Youve probably seen mold a time or two in your life before, but do you know what it truly is?
Mold is a fungus. It comes in all sorts of colors, including purple, green, orange, white, or black depending on the source of mold youre dealing with.
Mold can form on almost any surface, from bathroom walls to upholstery and yes, your plants leaves or soil. All it takes for mold to grow is an environment thats rich in moisture.
Thats why mold develops more in your bathroom than in your living room or bedroom. The dampness and humidity of your bathroom as you shower can linger in the room if you have inadequate ventilation. That makes an ideal environment for mold.
Since you water your houseplants often, youre also giving mold a home around your plants.
You might not have known, but mold is incredibly common. No, not overgrowths of mold necessarily, but very small particles in the air.
Each time you step outside, youre breathing in microscopic mold spores that are floating around in the air. These arent dangerous to your health in small quantities unless you have a mold sensitivity or allergy.
In larger quantities though, mold can cause health maladies. You may have breathing difficulties if mold gets bad enough. For those with mold allergies, these breathing troubles can be even more pronounced.
Mold overexposure can also lead to skin irritation, itchy and red eyes, wheezing, and nose stuffiness.
Here Are Some Of My Favorite Container Gardening Tools
Thank you for reading this post. I hope it helps you with your gardening needs. Ive listed some tools below that can help you with container gardening. These are affiliate links so Ill earn a commission if you use them.
Gardening Gloves I find the Pine Tree Tools Bamboo Gardening Gloves really good for both men and women. Its made from bamboo so helps absorb perspiration. They are also comfortable and fit very well.
Containers You know picking the right container is crucial for your container gardening. Ive written a detailed post on the best containers you can choose from. If youre happy with a plastic container, you can check out the Bloem Saturn Planter.
Watering Can This is a must-have tool when youre growing plants in pots or grow bags. It helps to water the potting soil without splashing on the foliage. The Kensington Watering Can is stylish, strong, and can provide precision when watering potted plants.
TrowelGarden Guru Trowel is my favorite because its durable and comfortable to use. My gardening friends really love having a trowel because they use it for digging soil, mixing fertilizer, moving seeds, leveling out the soil, mixing compost or mulch, and also dividing tubers
I really like the Corona Bypass Pruner because its durable and gives a clean cut that helps plants recover faster. If youre looking for something cheap, get the Fiskars Bypass Pruner that is really good as well.
Also Check: How To Clean Mold Off Of Bathroom Ceiling
How To Prevent Mold From Growing In Soil
Mold can never be totally eliminated. The truth is that mold spores are a regular part of soil and are normally harmless. The real threats to your plant are heat, humidity, and low ventilation. Under these conditions, mold spores grow into their adult fungi form and release even more spores. Indoor planters and container gardens are common hosts, as they retain more moisture. To prevent mold growth, follow the simple steps below:
She Laughed And Told Me To Get A Dog
I laughed too but realized there was some truth to her suggestion. Caring for houseplants often feels like an uphill battle. If you dont get everything exactly right, you end up with a sick or dead plant on your hands.
And often, these same species have the nerve to grow well in the most unpredictable climates in the wild.
Recommended Reading: How To Clean Mold Off Ceiling In Bathroom
How To Get Rid Of Mold On Seedlings
We may earn an affiliate commission for purchases using our links . Learn More.
Gardeners love the excitement of watching trays of seeds sprout and grow into healthy seedlings.
Unfortunately, many gardeners dont know what to do when they see mold on seedlings.
Once you know what causes mold on seedlings and how to eradicate the problem, your garden will look better than ever!
In this guide, Ill help you understand how to handle mold on seeds, seedlings, and potting trays and soil.
What to Expect From This Article
How Do You Get Mold Out Of Clothes That Have Already Been Washed
White Distilled Vinegar An excellent mould-killer, diluted vinegar can be worked directly into the stain or you can pre-soak the clothing in a bucket of water mixed with one cup of vinegar. You can also add 1-2 cups of vinegar to your washing machine per cycle to kill any mildew odours and brighten your whites.
Read Also: Best Mold Remover For Bathroom Ceiling