How to get rid of nasty, nasty, nasty fungus in flower bed?

wodkaApril 29, 2009

Thanks to someone earlier who helped me identify this nasty growth as a fungus. Whenever I see one, I put on gloves, bag up and throw immediately in the trash can, then wash my hands like crazy. There is one particular area that has suddenly been sprouting these nasty things (I'm too ladylike to give a detailed description, but they resemble male body parts.) Worse, they stink to high heaven. When I showed my husband one, he said that can't be real - someone's playing a joke on us!

We didn't have this problem until we had fresh mulch put down in late November. Whatever kind of mulch this is, it must be condusive (?) to growing these disgusting, vile things.

Is there any spray I can put on them to make them go away for good?

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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

To be more precise, they resemble male DOG body parts. You've been growing a nice batch of one of the common stinkhorn fungi, Mutinus caninus. I call it the 'dog thingie' fungus. But then I've never been exactly what one could call lady-like, lol.

Stinkhorns (there are many different kinds) are all important decomposers. These organisms are busily breaking down that new mulch for you, benefiting your plants and soil. Stinkhorns can be considered beneficial.

No, you cannot spray anything to kill them. But keep them removed as they appear so that you won't be offended.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2009 at 3:05PM
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rhizo, I'm still laughing as I type this. Thanks for the info. To think they are actually "good" for the soil is amazing to me. Should I leave them alone until they finally "shrink" and fade away? I dug up several golf-sized balls of fungi that were growing underneath them.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2009 at 3:19PM
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If you periodically disturb your mulch you can keep these fungi from growing those seed stalks. Any good cultivator or even a garden rake (not a leaf rake) will work. There is no need to put on gloves, yank they out, and throw them away.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 8:13AM
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kimmsr, thanks for your input. Someone, possibly here, when I first posted, said that if I used a garden tool, like a rake or shovel, to be sure and wash it down after using it to remove the fungi. That's why I wear the gloves. It's no big deal - I have a big box of those disposable latex ones left over from the hurricane that I use.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 10:43AM
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