Recently, I discovered a white and yellow mold or fungus on one of my houseplants, which astonished me. I understood that it may be somewhat unsettling if I weren’t used to seeing this. As a result, I decided it was time to discuss the causes of mold on indoor plants, how to prevent it, and how to effectively remove mold from an indoor plant.
Why are the plants in my house developing mold? Mold frequently grows on indoor plants as a result of inadequate drainage in the plant’s pot or container, excessive watering, inadequate ventilation, or insufficient sunlight. Houseplants with mold are frequently curable by removing the contaminated soil or chopping off the afflicted plant parts.
You won’t want to miss this article if mold is spreading on your indoor plants. I’ll go through how to recognize houseplant mold later. I’ll also go into greater detail regarding the circumstances that support the growth of mold and discuss some practical mold eradication techniques. Go on reading!
How can you prevent indoor plants from rotting?
- For all newly acquired plants or when switching soil, use wholesome, sterile soil. For your indoor plants, think about using professional potting soil, which is rich in nutrients.
- Try not to overwater plants. Too much water will encourage the growth of mold spores because mold prefers moist environments. Generally speaking, you need to water your plants whenever the top 2 inches or 1/4 of the soil is dry.
- Regularly remove dirt or dust from the leaves and remove debris (such as dead leaves) from the soil. It may be easier for mold to grow if organic waste is left on the soil. Don’t forget to prune your plant’s dead branches as well.
- Your plants should have a lot of light and airflow. Both natural and artificial light are necessary for the growth of your plant as well as to ward off mold. Airborne particles can readily move throughout the plant when there is a source of ventilation, like a fan set to low.
Why do the roots of my houseplants have mold on them?
Most likely, the white fluffy substance on the plant soil is a saprophytic fungus that is not harmful. The following factors can all contribute to fungal issues (mold) on the plant soil: excessive water, inadequate soil drainage, polluted potting soil, and a lack of sunlight. Low light and moisture provide the “ideal setting for the growth of white mold on home plants.
The mold fungus is made up of tiny microscopic spores, and they start to grow and flourish in certain circumstances. Depending on the cause of potting soil contamination, the mold can vary in color.
White fungus on soil
White growths on the ground that resemble threads are saprophytic fungus, according to the Royal Horticultural Society. Even if there is a lot of this white fungus growth, also known as mycelium, it is innocuous. (1)
Yellow fungal mold
Another example of benign saprophytic fungus is yellow mold growth on plant soil. Scrape it off or repot the plant in sterile potting soil to get rid of it.
Gray mold on houseplant soil
Gray mold can occasionally be a fungus called Botrytis. The location of this fuzzy growth is typically close to the soil’s surface or growing in thick vegetation. If gray mold is not handled, the plant could suffer.
Scale may be indicated by patches of black or dark green material that resemble soot. As they consume the plant’s sap, these minuscule insects have the ability to kill your plant. Although the sooty mold won’t hurt the plant, you must promptly get rid of scale insects.
Powdery mildew, a fungus that affects houseplants, can have the appearance of flour dusted on plants. The plant’s photosynthesis may be hampered if the fungal infestation becomes too severe, which could restrict the plant’s growth.
How can a moldy plant be fixed?
Since mold can swiftly spread from one pot to another, isolate your plant first. After that, scrape away the top several inches of earth in a well-ventilated area. That ought to work if the mold is not too old. You must completely repot the plant using an organic soil designed for potted plants if the mold is deeper than an inch or returns after a few weeks, advises Dubow.
Clean the interior of the pot with a squeeze of dish soap, some baking soda, and water before repotting the plant. To remove the mold from the pot’s interior, use a small amount of baking soda as a mild abrasive. Spray the infected leaves with water, then wipe each one with a paper towel after letting the pot dry fully (use a fresh towel for each leaf to prevent the spread of mold). Cut off any brown or dead leaves and throw them away. Then, sprinkle an organic fungicide on the underside of the leaves that are still there. “It’s simple to create your own: Mix one tablespoon of baking soda with a gallon of water, a half teaspoon of liquid detergent, and a tablespoon of horticultural oil “argues Dubow. Don’t omit the oil; it aids in the mixture’s adhesion to the mold. Keep your plant isolated for a few weeks to make sure the mold hasn’t returned, then water it after the soil has dried fully.
What is the fuzzy white substance on my houseplants?
Mealybugs frequently leave a white, cotton-like residue on plant leaves. The stems and leaves are where you’ll usually discover this residue. Either the mealybugs themselves or their egg sacs make up this residue.
The plant could also be covered in a sticky substance. This is honeydew that the mealybugs excrete. Ants may also be drawn to it.
Mealybugs are tiny, flat, oval-shaped white spots that appear on plant leaves. They also have a fuzzy or powdery appearance.
What is the white substance that is sprouting on my houseplants?
Powdery mildew is likely present if you notice any white particles on plant leaves. This fungus actually coats plant leaves and stems in what appears to be powdered sugar, living up to its name.
White mold: Is it harmful to plants?
A white mold that appears on the potting soil for indoor plants is typically a saprophytic fungus that is not harmful. Although the fungus doesn’t damage the plant, it is unsightly and indicates that there is a problem.
How is soil for indoor plants dried out?
There are a few simple techniques to remove moisture from the soil to assist it dry out fast and stop additional harm to your plant if it is beginning to exhibit early signs of overwatering.
- Take your plant out of the pot, then wrap the damp dirt in newspaper or dish towels. These can be gently pressed on the ground to allow the water to be absorbed onto the paper. This will significantly improve soil aeration and swiftly remove some of the water from the soil.
- Another choice is to remove your plant from its pot and place it on a bed of dry dirt. After a few hours, you will notice the soil becoming substantially dryer because the dry soil will begin to absorb some of the water through capillary action.
- using a hairdryer to dry the ground
- Utilize a hairdryer set to the chilly setting close to the soil after removing your plant from its container. This can greatly aid in drying the soil without damaging the plant, but you must be careful not to blow the soil off the roots.
- Another choice is to gently remove some of the surrounding dirt, being careful to avoid disturbing the rootball wherever feasible. After that, you can repot in the same container and add some dry soil to the back. This is a short-term solution that I have applied numerous times. Even though you’ll need to address any underlying problems, drying the soil out rapidly will aid your plant’s health.
What does white mold on plants look like?
The consequence of fungus spores, white mold on plants resembles a fuzzy material. The powdery mildew-looking white fuzz that develops from the spores on the plant’s leaves and stems very quickly. Both indoor and outdoor plants may be impacted by this white fuzzy mold, particularly in warm, moist, and humid growing environments. A healthy plant won’t be killed by white mold, but it can stunt its growth. Nearby plants can readily become infected by the airborne spores, and plant soil can develop a fuzzy white mold.
How to get rid of white mold on plants: Mix baking soda, water, and dish detergent to kill mold on indoor plants. Making a milk spray that helps to neutralize the cottony white mold is another natural way to get rid of houseplant mold. Another all-natural cure for indoor plants with mold is neem oil.
In the soil of houseplants, what destroys fungus?
Like soil mites and fungus gnats, moldy plants are not particularly attractive, but most of the time there is no need for alarm, and there are numerous easy solutions to the issue.
Learn which types of fungi harm houseplants and how to get rid of white mold by applying a synthetic or all-natural fungicide to replenish the soil. Find strategies to stop the mold in your houseplants from returning.
What Causes Fungus on Soil of Houseplants?
Your indoor plants’ dirt is covered in a white mold that is developing, and what was once attractive and healthy now appears unsettling and unsettling. In order to prevent this from happening again, it is crucial to understand what causes fungus on the soil of houseplants.
- Watering techniques
- Draining a pot
- polluted potting soil
- inadequate sunlight
The harmless saprophytic fungus is most likely the source of the white fuzzy material you notice on the soil around your plant. It frequently happens as a result of polluted potting soil, bad soil drainage, excessive watering, and insufficient light. All of these influence mold formation, and moisture and dim lighting are ideal conditions for fungus.
Different Types of Mold that Affect Houseplants
Despite the fact that many mold species resemble one another, only a handful of them can harm indoor plants. Discover some of the most prevalent fungal types that can harm indoor plants.
Common Plant Molds
- White mold
- Brown mold
- Dark mold
- Moldy smog
- a powdery mold
The main kind of fungus that harms indoor plants is saprophytic mycelium. Even if it completely covers the soil surface, this white, thread-like growth is unharmful. Yellow fungal mold is a different innocuous variety of this fungus that is likewise brought on by saprophytic fungi. If botrytis fungus is not treated, it will grow into a dangerous gray mold.
Sooty mold, which develops as a result of insects consuming the plant’s sap, leaves black and dark green areas, and powdery mildew, which appears as a light, flour-like substance on the plant’s leaves and stems.
Does Moldy Soil Harm Houseplants?
When you go to take care of your houseplants, you discover a white, fuzzy film of mold on the dirt near the base. Most likely, your initial thought is that your indoor plant is doomed. Nevertheless, depending on the type of fungus and the extent of the spread, this isn’t typically the case.
Although ugly, the majority of plant-soil molds are not dangerous to your indoor plants. However, if you don’t address the issue immediately once, your plant often suffers and eventually grows slowly. White mold can be easily removed, and there are various precautions you can take to stop it from coming again.
Treat Mold on Houseplant Soil by Transplanting
Repotting the plant with new soil to get rid of the contaminated soil and offer your houseplant a fresh start is one of the finest ways to treat mold on houseplant soil. Even while it takes longer than simply applying a fungicide, the effort is definitely worth it. help eliminate powdery mildew from indoor garden plants.
- Wet cloth
- unclean pot
- Potting soil that is pure
- plastic bag for waste
Utilizing a moist towel to wipe away any white dust from the stems and foliage of your houseplant is the first step in transplanting it. Remove your plant from the pot with care, then place the moldy soil in a plastic bag to be thrown away.
Examine the roots for illness symptoms while rinsing them under running water. As necessary, remove sick or damaged portions.
Place the plant in a sterile pot at the same height as before and fill the pot with sterile potting soil to the third level. After properly watering the plant, add the leftover soil to the pot.
How to Get Rid of Mold on Houseplant Soil with Baking Soda
We typically use baking soda, a natural powder, when we bake. But it also functions very well as an antifungal agent to get rid of the white material in a houseplant’s soil.
Baking Soda Mold Treatment
Sprinkle some baking soda on top of the soil around your plants to get rid of and prevent the growth of white mold. This powder acts as a natural antifungal to prevent the spread of mold spores and prevent mold growth. It is safe to use as required and does not hurt your plant.
Getting Rid of Houseplant Soil Mold with Vinegar
Vinegar has antifungal properties that eradicate mold and fungus from indoor plant soil. However, if you apply it at full concentration, it is an acidic liquid that harms plants. Here’s how to remove powdery mildew from indoor plants and destroy mold development in houseplant soil with apple cider vinegar and water.
Vinegar Soil Mold Eliminator
- a quart of water
- Apple cider vinegar, 3 teaspoons
- aerosol can
Three teaspoons of apple cider vinegar should be added to a gallon of water before the mixture is poured into a spray bottle. Every four to five days, until the mold has completely disappeared, spray the liquid over the white powder on the soil. The bottle should be marked, kept in a secure location, and used as needed.
You can also use this homemade spray to repel mold gnats. They’ll die from it shortly.
Using Hydrogen Peroxide to Eliminate Soil Mold
By adding more oxygen to the soil, hydrogen peroxide encourages the growth of healthy plants. It is also effective as a fungicide and pesticide. Here are some instructions for using hydrogen peroxide to treat aphids on indoor plants and mold on houseplant soil.
Hydrogen Peroxide Soil Treatment
12 teaspoons of hydrogen peroxide at 3%
Add the hydrogen peroxide to a container after adding a gallon of water. To kill the white mold, pour the liquid into a spray bottle and use it to mist the soil’s surface once daily for three days. Place the container in storage with a label on it.
Get Rid of Houseplant Soil Mold with Neem Oil
Even though there are many commercial fungicides available, nature tends to supply us with what we require. A common ingredient for making natural fungicides and insecticides is neem oil. From skincare to insect repellant to plant therapy, this oil from the Neem tree has a variety of uses.
Neem Oil Mold Eliminator
- 0.5 gallons of water
- Neem oil, 2 tablespoons
- Dish soap in liquid form, 1 teaspoon
- drinking cup
Water your infected plant well with a watering can filled with a half gallon of water, two teaspoons of Neem oil, and one teaspoon of liquid dish soap.
To stop the growth of fungus, wait until the soil is completely dry between treatments and water your plant with the natural fungicide once a month. The fungus gnat and other pests that attack indoor plants can be repelled with neem oil.
How to Use a Fungicide to Get Rid of Soil Mold
Your neighborhood garden center sells a variety of fungicides that work to eliminate soil mold if you’d prefer not to worry with making a homemade remedy. However, it’s crucial to pick the appropriate product and adhere to the application guidelines provided by the manufacturer.
Use a commercial fungicide to get rid of saprophytic fungi and apply it as directed by the manufacturer to get rid of white mold on the soil of your houseplant. To kill the mold spores, use the solution as indicated over the soil, and then take preventative measures to guarantee the fungus doesn’t reappear.
Using the Sun to Kill Houseplant Soil Mold
The sun is capable of much more than just warming the globe. It also gives us vitamin D and has antimicrobial and mold-killing properties. So, the best natural treatment for getting rid of white mold in the soil of your plants is sunlight.
Sunlight Soil Treatment
Move your houseplant outside to a sunny spot if you’d prefer not to repot it or use a fungicide. Mold cannot survive in arid situations and is found in the top layer of the soil. In order to quickly get rid of mold, the sun’s UV rays kill the spores while drying the soil.
Treating Moldy Houseplant Soil with Cinnamon
Everyone is familiar with the flavor of cinnamon, which goes well on toast and when added to a steaming dish of oatmeal. However, cinnamon also contains potent antifungal and antibacterial qualities, making it ideal for mixing with the soil in your plants to prevent the spread of mold.
Cinnamon Soil Treatment
- Printed towels
Spread some cinnamon over the soil at the plant’s base after removing large patches of mold from the dirt’s surface using paper towels. The spice kills the mold spores and gives out a lovely aroma in the process.
What’s a Good Soil and Pot Type for Stopping Mold Growth?
Knowing which potting mix and container types are best for preventing plant soil mold is a good idea if you recently bought a new plant from the garden center or decide to transfer it into a new pot.
Avoiding Houseplant Mold
- ceramic pots
- sterile ground
Terra cotta is the ideal material for a house plant’s pot to prevent the soil from becoming overly wet. This substance, which is a porous clay, can breathe, in contrast to the way that plastic containers trap moisture, which could result in the growth of mold.
Additionally, it’s essential to pick a pot with drainage holes so that any extra water can drain when you’re watering your plants. When relocating houseplants, always use sterile potting soil from your local garden center; never use soil from the backyard because it could be contaminated with fungi.
How to Prune Your Plants after Getting Rid of Soil Mold
The first step in caring for plants is to get rid of the mold growth in the soil. Pruning is required to promote the health of the remainder of your plant because the stems and leaves of your plant frequently develop mold.
Examine your indoor plant’s foliage for mold contamination and spores, and then gently clean it with a moist towel. If stems or leaves are yellowing, wilting, or damaged by excessive fungal development, trim them away with pruning shears or sharp scissors and put them in a plastic bag.
How to Remove the Houseplant Soil Mold Manually
Hand removal is one of the easiest ways to get rid of mold from the soil around your plants. This method is helpful if the mold growth is newly grown and on the top layer of dirt.
Manual Mold Remover
- a plastic bag
As you work, move the plant in front of a window with sunlight. The top layer of moldy soil should be removed with a spoon and thrown away in a plastic garbage bag.
Till there is no longer any mold surrounding the plant, keep removing soil. If required, replenish the soil in the pot with fresh, sterile soil after letting the plant sit in the sun to dry the soil.
Ways to Prevent Mold on Houseplant Soil
While a house plant usually recovers just fine after eliminating mold from the soil, repeated occurrences cause the plant to suffer and struggle, leading to stunted growth. Here’s how to stop mold from destroying your indoor plants.