Mold on the soil in a flower pot – what to do about it?
We often encounter the situation when a white coating appears on the soil in our pots, especially during the autumn and winter seasons. This is a cause for concern, because it means the development of a fungus that is dangerous to plants, and to some extent it can make life miserable for humans as well.
Causes of mould
Before we go on to explain where the mold on the soil comes from, it is worth noting that another type of white deposit can appear in the pot. This is nothing more than lime buildup, which most often occurs when plants are watered with unsteady, hard water. Remember, it is best to let the water stand for a few hours before watering. The deposit formed by the fungus takes the form of white fluff
The most common causes of mold on potting soil are as follows:
- Increased indoor humidity.
- Inadequate air circulation.
- Watering plants too frequently.
- Too acidic potting soil.
- Too little sunlight.
- Low temperature.
The influence of mould on the plant
The presence of mold in the pot will make the plant noticeably weaker and susceptible to disease. Phytomycoses, or fungal plant diseases such as powdery mildew, spotting and rust, will lead to wilting, withering and leaf drop. In addition, pot mold will eventually reach the roots and make it difficult for the plant to take up nutrients and water. The fungus will not be confined to one pot. It can spread spores and infect other flowers. As a result of the mold feeding on the plant for a long period of time, its roots will begin to rot, eventually causing the plant to die. The presence of spores in the air can make life difficult for people with allergies, causing numerous allergic reactions.
How to get rid of the unsightly tarnish?
There are several ways that will allow you to get rid of mold on the potting soil. The most effective method will be the use of fungicides, or chemical plant protection products. Fungicides can be purchased in stationary or online stores that sell chemicals for plants. If mildew has attacked the deeper layers of the soil, it will be necessary to repot the flowers into a new pot with fresh soil. When repotting, it is a good idea to clean the pot and the roots thoroughly. During the autumn and winter period it is best to fight the fungus by other means. Repotting the plant is recommended only in the spring.
There are also home remedies for temporary control of mold in plants, such as
- add a few small pieces of coal to the top layer of soil or sprinkle it with wood ashes,
- sprinkle cinnamon on top of the soil,
- remove the soil layer with mold and replace it with sand,
- spray the soil with a solution of water and hydrogen peroxide in the ratio of 1:10. Use the prepared preparation until the mold disappears.
Prevention is better than cure
Remember – prevention is better than the most effective treatment. The use of fungicides and other methods to fight the fungus is only a temporary measure to prevent the growth of mold. It is important to completely exclude the possibility of its formation
Take care, above all, of the following conditions:
- The room where the plants stand should be ventilated frequently. In order to ensure proper air circulation it is a good idea to leave the windows slightly ajar so that the room is constantly aired.
- The cause of mold can be too much watering. Always check that the ground is slightly dry. Remember that the most common cause of wilting and withering of flowers is not overdrying, but overwatering.
- Make sure that your pots have holes in the bottom. These will allow excess water to drain into a tray that you can empty later. You can always drill a few holes in the bottom of the pot.
- Provide the plants with a suitable substrate with a drainage layer. You can use pieces of porcelain, clay pots, pebbles or expanded clay to create a drainage layer.
- Place plants in a sunny and well ventilated place.
- Use soil from reliable producers.