Artillery fungus - advic e please

suggiFebruary 27, 2009

Last fall we discovered black spots on the front of our house and on my car a found out we had that fungus. The mulch is crdar. So far we have not seen it anywhere else but the mulch is all around the house.

Unfortunately, the bushes in the front are holly and rhotodendrums and another one and all these never lose there leaves over the winter like the others in the, even if we have all that mulch in the affected area taken away and replace with 100% cerar mulch I assume the gleba or whatever those viable spots are will be also on the leaves of those bushes and when the guy comes to prune the bushes some of the gleba will reinfect the new mulch -- am I right? Since the gleba lives for 10 years even if they prune before removing the old mulch then next year when they prune any overlooked places on the bushes from this year could fall on the mulch next year and we would have a problem again - am I right or am I making too much of this? It is horrible to try to get off the house and esp. the car.

I was thinking of stone instead but we have stone walls on both sides of the driveway and there is a bit of a slope on top to thje wall so I am afraid the stones would be falling in the driveway which is OK as I could just keep picking them up unless it snows and then if you are unable to see them hubby would be getting them in the snowblower.

Any suggestions would be helpful. If we used plastic and dirt we already get water in the basement and I am afraid of waterpooling on the plastic and creating more of a problem. HELP PLEASE.

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I have problems thinking that your fungus is only from the artillery fungus. But I do have a suggestion. You need to change the drainage next to your house to slope away from the house.You can raise the edge near the house but a better option is to lower the slope away from the house perhaps making a small French type ditch that you can cover with rocks.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2009 at 7:41PM
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Plastic on soils keeps necessary air from infiltrating and the soil under that plastic then goes anaerobic (absence of air) and anaerobic soils tend to easily develop diseases, so putting plastic on soil is never a good idea. Unfortunately your mulch is what is creating the conditions that the artillary fungus finds desirable, although periodic and frequent distrubing of that mulch (raking it) would keep the fungus from gettng established. These fungi also seem to prefer growing in Cedar mulches so possible changing to another mulch material may help, and getting more organic matter into the soil may also since I have seen places that did have a problem with these fungi cease having those problems when the soil was made to dran better with more organic matter.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2009 at 8:12AM
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petzold6596(8b southern NM)

Artillery fungus is next to impossible to eradicate as there is no fungicide application approved yet. AF is naturally found on decaying wood in wood lands. With the advent of wood mulches the fungus has entered the urban environment.

The only method of control is management. Use 'bark mulches' instead of wood, remove wood mulches and replace with non organic mulches, reduce moisture of the wood mulch, or move to the Southwest where the problem does not exist.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2009 at 6:14PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

suggi, would it be possible for you to get rid of most of the cedar chips and replace them with pine BARK nuggets, instead? This and other saprophytic fungi thrive on wood-based mulches, but not bark mulches. (Like petzold said.)

    Bookmark   March 5, 2009 at 4:01PM
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UGH! We have it too. WILL IT HARM THE SIDING? I can't find anything about the effects of it. Thanks!

    Bookmark   June 24, 2010 at 7:18PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

If this is what you have, it will harm the siding. There is plenty of information about artillery fungus on the web, but you won't find much on how to clean the siding (no can do), or how to eradicate it from your property other than by replacing the type of mulch you have. It has nothing to do with drainage, by the way. This interesting fungus can even grow on old barn siding or window frames, etc.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2010 at 11:34PM
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Spores are dormant "seeds" of fungi, so those spores will not harm you siding just make it look really neglected. A couple of people that I correspond with have told me that washing the siding with Trisodium Phosphate (TSP) has removed those spores. TSP is a very powerful cleaner and you need to wear really good hand protection when you use it. Powerwashing has not been shown to be very effective.

Here is a link that might be useful: About Artillary Fungus

    Bookmark   June 25, 2010 at 7:46AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

"Harm" would be a good word for what the sticky spores do to siding, lawn furniture, vehicles, and just about anything else within range. At least, that's how I would feel about it. I've never found a product that worked to remove the spores (including TSP), without also causing damage to the finish of whatever was being cleaned. I've 'heard' that the Magic Eraser (Mr. Clean) might be useful on some surfaces. I've not tried it, myself.

If you live in a location where this little fungus is around, follow the earlier advice of avoiding wood chips. Pine bark seems to be fine, as well as pine straw.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2010 at 5:31PM
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Because dirt and molds and mildew will cause paint adhesion problems many painting contractors have used TSP to clean before painitng for many years with no harm done to the siding. Using bleach mixtures can cause the color of the siding to fade, something I heve not seen happen when TSP is used. I have also used TSP on aluminum and vinyl siding with no harm seen.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2010 at 9:01AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I didn't say that TSP would harm a surface. I said that it didn't work on the fungal spores.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2010 at 11:26AM
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to get rid of artillery fungus or shot gun fungus check out my page for the best removal and prevention tips

Here is a link that might be useful: artillary fungus removal

    Bookmark   March 7, 2013 at 12:41PM
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