Decado
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Fuzzy White Mold

I started noticing this in my seed flats, is this the mycorrhizae I inoculated it with or something else?

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rainbowgardener
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I was hoping someone would respond to this who uses the microrrhizal innoculant. I never have, so I'm no expert. But I wouldn't think that would be your fuzzy white mold. Are you using peat pots or heavily peat based potting soil? Does it stay wet all the time? The peat pots when bottom watered are famous for growing mold on them (there's a thread here about that) because they hold too much moisture.
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It's quite common & is due to poor air circulation. If you have a dome/lid on your seed starting flats, remove it for a few hours & the mold will go away. If no lid/dome, place the flats in an area with better air circulation or put a fan on them (on low or medium).

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I've realized it must be because I started getting it in my potted plants I inoculated it with also, which never had mold problems for years before.

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Mycorhizae do not live above ground.
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gixxerific
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Toil wrote:Mycorhizae do not live above ground.
Yes it is not that. It is too much moisture. Damping off if I read this right. Which is easily controlled, just lay off the water and give them some air flow. It should go away if not too bad.

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That's advice I've taken gix, and it sure does work.

My rule of thumb for leaving it there is I only remove colored mold. I k ow that sounds wrong.
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No it's definitely the mycorrhizae, as it showed up in all my plants even in warm dry areas after applying the mycorrhizae in the compost tea.

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Toil wrote:Mycorhizae do not live above ground.
This seemed like an interesting statement. I did an Internet search and found a presentation (unfortunately, it looks a lot like PowerPoint Phluff--a description for which I am indebted to Dr. Edward Tuftes) at https://faculty.uncfsu.edu/ssalek/biol130/05%20&%206%20Plants%20Fungi.pdf .

In this PDF presentation on fungi, pp. 37 and 42 use the phrase fruiting bodies of mycorrhizae to refer, first (p. 37), to wild mushrooms of many kinds and, second (p. 42), to truffles.

Is a distinction being drawn, therefore, between mycorrhizae vs. fruiting bodies of mycorrhizae? Not having read Teaming with Microbes, I have only documents available online to go by, but wanted to know more about the original statement quoted above.

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Fruiting bodies? White mold? I don't see a connection.

Check out endo/ecto mycorhizae. As far as I know, the ones with fruiting bodies associate with trees, and don't fruit instantly (or truffles would be cheap).

I'm pretty sure the poster has mold, not truffles or oyster mushrooms. That would be a miracle.

The timing is a coincidence.
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gixxerific
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The way I see it i have fruiting bodies due to the mycorhizae in my new potting mix.

I had some fungus only when I was starting some seeds that were in an enclosed planter. Due to excess moisture the damping off became visible. That was a different mix of soil at that point. Still no more damping off now that I am practicing better watereing control. Inch a week remember, theoretically.

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gixxerific wrote:
Toil wrote:Mycorhizae do not live above ground.
Yes it is not that. It is too much moisture. Damping off if I read this right.
We are getting several things mixed up here. Damping off is a fungal condition which appears in conditions of too much moisture and not enough air circulation. But it is NOT fuzzy white mold. Damping off is not really visible at all except for what it does to the seedlings, which develop a pinched in area of stem at or just above soil level with a faint brownish ring there. Then they bend over and lay flat on the soil. If you pick them up the stem disconnects from the root at the pinch. Once a seedling is affected by damping off enough to bend over and especially if it is lying on the ground, it doesn't matter what you do at that point, it can't be saved.

And agree with toil that while damping off, blight, mold, and mushrooms are all fungi, they are not the same thing. Mushrooms may be associated with (some) mycorrhizae (so some mycorrhizae have parts that can live above ground), but MOLD isn't. It seems coincidental, but I don't think the original fuzzy white mold under discussion is associated with the innoculant. Maybe the mold spores were in the compost tea, or the addition of the compost tea made everything moist enough to favor the mold.
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Yes that's right!

You'll know a fruiting body when you see one... In your fridge! Take a loupe and look at yor mold. You will see filaments. Not mushrooms.

As I said before, I do not remove white mold, as it is harmless. Good indicator of excess moisture though. Early warning, if you will.

Mycorhizal inoculant should list species on the label. Why not post the list, and look some up. You will see none of them live any portion of their lives above ground. You may also discover that they in fact take quite a bit of time to wake up and associate from dry spores.

As for fruiting bodies I don't think of them as "the fungus". They are an expendable and temporary part of the organism, for the purpose of reproduction.
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Mycelia of some mushrooms and mold can be fuzzy and white and will grow "above ground" as long as the light is not too strong. (Believe me, I *know*. Very disappointing when the fuzzy white growth turns out to be mold and not mushroom :roll:) In mushroom culture, green and black mold are considered REALLY BAD. They reveal themselves from white fuzzy stuff after they develop their fruiting bodies and the colored spores. On the other hand, in Asia, they grow red mold on rice for medicinal and culinary purposes. Then there's the blue cheese mold, and of course Penicillin mold which is also blue/green. 8)

I looked up mychorrhizae and [url=https://www.botany.hawaii.edu/faculty/wong/BOT135/Lect26.htm]this seems like a good read[/url].

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This is also covered a bit in teaming with microbes.
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I'll get a picture of the varieties in this mixture later, too many to type out. But I'm positive it is the mycorrhizae I'm seeing as like I said it showed up in all my other potted plants after I inoculated.

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Right. I'm agreeing with you. They may not be detrimental to your plants if they are all saprotrophic fungi that only feed on dead organic matter and that form beneficial symbiotic relationships with living plants (as that seems to be the working definition of mycorrhizae)

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Apple, that is not at all the definition working or otherwise of mycorrhizae. We are talking about endomycorrhizal fungi that do not exist without plants. Period. They get food from plants, and when the plant dies, they die. Not to mention, at the seedling stage we are not talking about visible mass, and the fungus is not anywhere close to mature enough to afford a fruiting body, which in the case of endomycorrhizal fungi is not above ground anyway.

Unless we are talking trees we are not talking anything above ground, and in no cases are we talking above ground hyphae , which would make no sense since the fungus trades nutrients for food. The nutrients are chemically locked up, and in exchange for fetching them the fungus gets paid. What you suggest is the equivalent of a lichen having a divorce.

These guys are specialists, not opportunists. As far as I know they are not decomposers like the mold the poster is seeing, which would go away with adequate light and ventilation. Take that mold seriously. It is an early warning. Maybe you will get away with it, but maybe not. Light and air won't hurt, damping off will. And you have great conditions for damping off if you have mold.

If you want to see them, you will need a scope and some slides.
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Decado
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Explain to me how I suddenly got mold in several potted plants in dry warm areas that have been there years (with no mold on them ever) after applying the compost tea with mycorrhizae in it then?

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Here's what I said on the previous page:

It seems coincidental, but I don't think the original fuzzy white mold under discussion is associated with the innoculant. Maybe the mold spores were in the compost tea, or the addition of the compost tea made everything moist enough to favor the mold.


You have confounded variables... happens a lot in science! :)
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Can you get in there with a spoon as I suggested so we can see where the filaments lead?

My first guess is you got mold the same way everyone gets mold. From mold spores, moisture, and inadequate light and ventilation. You are reporting the opposite, so we have a puzzle.
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OK, don't know how to respond to that... :?
First, I was thinking out loud, rather than thinking it out then posting, so it's very possible I got something wrong. I was also plugging some ideas together, so it's possible you misunderstood what I said... My statement might have been better punctuated....

You said:
We are talking about endomycorrhizal fungi that do not exist without plants. Period. They get food from plants, and when the plant dies, they die.
and I said:
... that form beneficial symbiotic relationships with living plants (as that seems to be the working definition of mycorrhizae)
Don't these two statements sound similar? Note that when I underlined the "and" I meant if they "also" etc. above, then all the better. I didn't mean to imply that "saprotrophic fungi that only feed on dead organic matter" and mycorrhizae were one and the same. I don't know if they are, you said they aren't. I'll accept that. Yeah, now that I look at it, it's confusing.

As for the white furry thing -- I don't know why it has to be mold. Seriously, if you look at all my oyster mushroom and shiitake hyphae/mycelium growing on agar media, sawdust, and woodchip substrates, they're all furry and white. Most of them are in my bedroom right now. So, seeing them day in and day out, you tell me white and furry growing in mycorrhiza inoculated soil and I automatically think "mushrooms!" -- rather than mold. :wink:

I don't know where decado got his stuff, but Fungi Perfecti sells mycorrhizal products. I kind of assumed that at least some of them are a by-product of mushroom cultivation (like the way they collect BAGS of spores from the filtration system and now sell spored oils.), though I have no basis for that assumption. I mentioned elsewhere the P. Stamet's Brussels Sprout bed inoculated with H. ulmarius research that boosted yield and size, as well as how P. eryngii has symbiotic relationship to carrot family plants.

Also, my TP tube-as-bottomless tall/narrow pots have started growing mold-like patches after I watered them with spent oyster mushroom substrate extract. It might be mold, it might not. I've been watering with AACT to increase competition and the patches haven't grown any bigger though they haven't disappeared entirely. These have onion seedlings in them, and they looked a little stressed initially, but now they are looking happier. As long as the cardboard tubes are getting broken down, I don't really care what's doing it.

If I'm still wrong, then I guess I'll just have to finish reading that book and try to catch up. :wink:

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I'm not sure how they are cultured but I hear it is not easy.

This is definitely an obligatory relationship, like the fungus of a lichen.

Mold is just a catch all I think, and not a class of fungi. I don't consider white mold to be a pest. But you know way more about mushrooms than I.

I do know that conditions leading to visible fungi on the surface are not good for seedlings.
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Post a pic.
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