I've Mushrooms Growing in My Flowerbed
Mushrooms come in many forms, and may grow in various places in the yard, including flowerbeds. Flowerbeds are usually full of organic material and moisture, two items mushrooms need to grow. While they may be unsightly, mushrooms are not typically bad for your plants.
What Mushrooms Need
Mushrooms need three elements to grow: moisture, a food source and reduced temperatures. Since your plants also need a number of these things, and can offer the remainder, a flowerbed can support mushrooms to grow. Many different fungi create mushrooms, and they vary in size and colour, but many typically appear after prolonged wet periods.
Creating a Mushroom Haven
Tall blossoms or leafy shrubs in your flowerbed provide shade for mushrooms to grow. Mulched soils remain moist and cool, which can also create the proper conditions for mushroom growth. Flowerbeds also offer several resources of food which mushrooms thrive on, including splitting roots, mulch, and leaves or other plant debris. Applying too much mulch to your flowerbed could lead to mushroom growth, as can enabling the flux to dry out. Mulches that dry out are more likely to encourage fungal activity, and when the mulch is moistened again, mushrooms usually pop up. Wood chips from young pine or cypress trees, as well as bark chips from hardwood trees are more likely than other mulch materials to support mushroom growth.
Prevention and Control
As you can not remove all organic material from your flowerbed, there are ways to discourage mushroom growth. Dig up timber and dead roots, and keep any mulch no more than 3 to 4 inches deep. Remove leaf litter and plant debris, as well as dying or dead plants in the surface of the soil. Use bark chips in adult pine or cypress trees because these decay slowly and are less prone to fungal problems than other types, or compost wood mulches before using them in your garden.
What to Do About Existing Mushrooms
Mushrooms are part of the natural decay process which occurs in your flowerbed, therefore it is nearly impossible to eliminate them eternally. You can remove existing mushrooms, and track your flowerbeds to remove those that appear later, or you could ignore them. When the food source is removed from your flowerbed, the mushrooms will eventually stop growing. This can take a while, based on the form of mushroom and the weather conditions. In perfect conditions, where the flowerbed provides moisture, food and reduced temperatures, mushrooms can reproduce rapidly and for years. Discard the mushrooms after you remove them in the flowerbed. While some mushrooms are harmless, several are toxic, which means you should never eat any mushroom unless an expert has confirmed it is not poisonous. Wear gloves when removing them in the flowerbeds.