Garden Word of the Day
Take $5 off planting calendars from Forging Time with the code DAILYGARDEN841. This is an excellent resource with some amazing photos.
If you have black mold in your house, you should go outside right away.
Garden variety black molds are something else entirely. Well, mostly.
Mold of any color
Molds are a type of fungus. Other common fungi include yeasts, mushrooms, and truffles. Fungi do not contain chlorophyll, so they do not perform photosynthesis. Instead, they get their food by breaking down and absorbing organic materials. Fungi reproduce using spores and many of them generate threadlike filaments, called hyphae. These hyphae develop into a complex network, called the mycelium. Despite all the similarities, slime molds, such as dog vomit slime mold, are not fungi. We’ll leave that discussion for another day.
You may see gray mold, white mold, black, or even blue mold. There are several different types of black mold. All of them produce black mycelium. Most of them are relatively benign, but some of them are dangerous.
Toxic black mold
After building materials are exposed to moisture from flooding or fire-fighting, Stachybotrys chartarum fungi start to grow. Generally rare in nature, these spores can also be found in grain and soil. Water-damaged buildings provide the perfect habitat for these microfungi to breed and grow. As they grow and are disturbed, they release toxins into the air that can make you sick. Toxic black mold needs to be removed right away.
Sooty mold is another black mold. Often seen on citrus and other tree leaves, onions and garlic, peanuts, and grapes, this black mold is the Aspergillus niger fungi. For the most part, this variety is safe to be around, unless you are a farmworker and exposed to it alot. In that case, a serious lung disease called aspergillosis can occur. This fungus can also cause fungal ear infections (otomycosis).
I was surprised to learn than the sooty mold fungus is commonly used in industrial applications to produce citric acid and high fructose corn syrup, and to clarify wine. Weird, right?
If you see sooty mold, apply sticky barriers to halt the protection provided by ants, and give your plants a wipe down to remove the mold.
Alternaria leaf spot
Also known as Alternaria rot and black rot, Alternaria leaf spot creates black or brown spots on the leaves of many garden plants. It can also create dark, round, flattened lesions on cherries, papaya, tomatoes, and many other fruits. Similar in appearance to blossom end rot, Alternaria leaf spot damage can appear anywhere on an infected fruit. [Unfortunately, I couldn’t find a photo I could use.] Exposure to the Alternaria alternata fungi has been found to trigger asthma and allergic rhinitis.
If this mold appears in your garden, your plants will benefit from proper spacing, pruning for better air circulation, and the removal of affected plant material.
Bottom line: If you see black mold, find out which type it is and take the appropriate action.
11/28/2021 09:57:54 pm
I find it alarming that prolonged mold exposure could cause health illnesses. I heard that my colleague is interested in purchasing a living space around our office. I'll be sure to suggest that we find a mold removal expert before he completes his move as a preventive measure.
11/29/2021 06:46:52 am
2/9/2022 08:30:29 am
Water-damaged buildings provide the perfect habitat for these microfungi to breed and grow. As they grow and are disturbed, they release toxins into the air that can make you sick. Thank you, amazing post!
2/9/2022 10:31:48 am
Thank you, Tiffanie!
7/21/2022 12:46:53 pm
Also known as Alternaria rot and black rot, Alternaria leaf spot creates black or brown spots on the leaves of many garden plants. It can also create dark, round, flattened lesions on cherries, papaya, tomatoes, and many other fruits. Nice post thank you!
7/27/2022 01:19:25 pm
8/2/2022 01:25:51 am
Water-damaged structures provide an ideal environment for these microfungi to breed and grow. Toxins that can make you sick are released into the air as they grow and are disturbed. Thank you for the great post!
8/2/2022 08:41:28 am
Mold can compromise and weaken the immune system, especially if you are exposed to the mold spores. This mainly happens to people with asthma and allergies. Professional mold remediation can help improve the health of your family and even your pets by completely removing mold from your home.
5/24/2023 07:01:17 pm
5/29/2023 03:26:59 am
Thank you for sharing the link to your article titled "Garden Word of the Day: Black Mold." I had the opportunity to read through the content, and I appreciate the information you provide on this topic.
Leave a Reply.
You can grow a surprising amount of food in your own yard. Ask me how!
To help The Daily Garden grow, you may see affiliate ads sprouting up in various places.
You can also get my book, Stop Wasting Your Yard!