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How to Remove Mushrooms From the Lawn

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Mushrooms on your lawn are not only unsightly, but they are potentially dangerous, as well. A variety of different mushrooms, including inky caps and "Armillaria," grace the grasses of many homeowners when the weather gets moist, usually around fall. Although the mushrooms look harmless, some are poisonous when ingested, making their elimination necessary for those with small children and pets. Removing mushrooms from your lawn involves a bit of work, but it is worth the effort.

Destroy any thatch hiding below your grass. Thatch is a thick layer of dead and living roots and other organic material that feeds mushrooms. Run a vertical mower back and forth over the thatch and remove the broken organic material from the ground with a rake or broom.

Dig up the object on which the mushrooms grow. Mushrooms often grow on dead roots. Dig the roots up from the ground with a shovel -- you may have to remove the entire tree to complete this process.

Aerate your lawn if circles of mushrooms are present. These circles, also called “fairy rings,” often have dead or dying grass located inside the circle. Run over the area with an aerator, which will create holes in the soil, helping to break up the fungal mat. Water the area daily to help establish new grass.

Dig underneath the mushrooms. Breaking mushrooms off at the top does nothing about the fungus underneath the ground. Use a shovel to dig down underneath the mushroom’s mat, or the thick soil that resides underneath the fungus.

Eradicate Lawn Mushrooms

Fungi in the soil break down dead and decaying matter, such as dead roots, thatch and wood. Mow the lawn regularly and limit the amount of water applied to the lawn. Short grass dries out faster than tall grass, reducing the moisture that mushrooms need to grow. Rake up leaves, sticks and grass clippings as soon as they appear on your lawn. Consider dethatching your lawn as well, especially if your grass has a thick layer of thatch, the layer of interwoven dead grass between the grass and soil. Nitrogen speeds up the decaying process of fungi food. Scraps of lumber are often buried at construction sites, providing fodder for problem mushrooms. If you cut down trees or remove shrubs from your landscape, remove the roots as well to prevent future mushroom growth.

Tip

Never eat wild mushrooms from your lawn, as they could be poisonous. Keep children and pets away from wild mushrooms.

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