If you see mushrooms growing your garden, you might be\nwondering why they are there, and how to get rid of them.\n\n\n\nSo, why does your garden have mushrooms? Mushrooms\noften grow on dead or dying trees, branches, logs, or stumps to feed on organic\nmaterial. Mushrooms are more likely to grow\nin cool, moist, humid, dark areas of your garden. They are also more likely to appear during\nextended periods of cloudy, rainy, cool weather, or if you over water your\ngarden.\n\n\n\nThere are lots of different reasons that mushrooms may grow\nin your garden. However, remember that\nmost of them are harmless, and they will not hurt your plants. Let\u2019s take a closer look as why you have\nmushrooms in your garden, how to get rid of them, and how to prevent them from\ngrowing.\n\n\n\nWhy Does My Garden Have Mushrooms?\n\n\n\nThere are many reasons that your garden may have\nmushrooms. However, it comes down to two\nbasic things: food and climate. Let\u2019s\nget to know mushrooms a little better, and then we can understand why they grow\nin a particular area.\n\n\n\nWhat Are Mushrooms?\n\n\n\nAccording to Wikipedia, \u201ca mushroom is the fleshy,\nspore-bearing fruiting body of a fungus, typically produced above ground on\nsoil or on its food source.\u201d\n\n\n\nA mushroom contains spores that allow a fungus to reproduce.\n\n\n\nThis tells us a few important things. First, a mushroom is only one part of a\nfungus. The fungus has a part that grows\nabove ground (the mushroom), and a part that grow underground.\n\n\n\nSecond, a mushroom is the \u201cfruit\u201d of the fungus, meaning\nthat it reproduces by spreading spores (as opposed to seeds) via the mushroom. It turns out that the wind blows spores from\nmushrooms to other areas, where they start new fungus growth.\n\n\n\nThird, a mushroom may grow on its food source. Since we often see mushrooms growing on\ntrees, especially fallen trees, logs, and stumps, we know that mushrooms like\nto eat dead wood.\n\n\n\nIn fact, mushrooms are a natural part of the decomposition\nof organic matter. Mushrooms have no\nroots, and cannot produce energy through photosynthesis like plants can.\n\n\n\nInstead, mushrooms feed on organic matter, and in turn, they\nrelease nutrients into the soil, which plants can use for growth. Some mushrooms even have a symbiotic\nrelationship with plants, helping them to absorb water and nutrition.\n\n\n\nFor more information, check out this article on mushrooms from Wikipedia.\n\n\n\nMushrooms generally eat wood or other organic material, and\nthey like to grow in cool, moist, humid, and dark areas.\n\n\n\nYour Garden Has Mushrooms Because Of Dead or Dying Wood\n\n\n\nOne of the most likely causes of mushrooms growing in your\ngarden is dead or dying wood. This could\ncome in the form of:\n\n\n\nDiseased or old treesFallen treesFallen branchesLogsStumpsFirewood pile near gardenMulch\n\n\n\nIf you buy mulch from a landscape or garden center and\nspread it around, you could easily end up with mushrooms growing throughout\nyour garden.\n\n\n\nMushrooms are more likely to grow on the sides or bottom of\nfallen trees, branches, logs, or stumps, where they will have more shade and\nmoisture, along with cooler temperatures and plenty of food.\n\n\n\nMushrooms feast on tree stumps and other organic matter, and will return nutrients to the earth.\n\n\n\nIf you keep firewood in a shady area, mushrooms may grow on\nthe wood over time. Eventually, the wind\nmay blow their spores into your garden, where new mushrooms will grow. This is more likely if your firewood pile is\nnear the garden.\n\n\n\nYour Soil Has Plentiful Organic Material\n\n\n\nEven if there is no wood in your garden, mushrooms will still\ngrow if there is plenty of organic material in your soil. Remember that mushrooms need to feed on\norganic material, and if they cannot find wood, they will settle for decaying plant\nmatter from compost, manure, or other soil amendments.\n\n\n\nCompost that is not quite finished can be tempting food for mushrooms.\n\n\n\nThis doesn\u2019t mean that you should stop adding compost, manure, or mulch (such as grass clippings or fallen leaves) to your garden. Organic material is necessary for your plants to grow, and it also helps to replace nutrients in the soil - for more information, check out my article on how to make compost.\n\n\n\nRemember that mushrooms are not harmful to your garden, and\nin fact they help to decompose organic material into a form that plants can use\nfor nutrition.\n\n\n\nYour Garden Conditions Are Ideal For Mushroom Growth\n\n\n\nAside from food, the climate is another deciding factor in\nwhether mushrooms grow in your garden. \nIf your garden is cool, moist, humid, and dark, mushrooms are more\nlikely to grow.\n\n\n\nIf there are lots of trees, shrubs, or tall plants near your\ngarden, their shade may provide the perfect environment for mushrooms to\ngrow. A tree\u2019s branches will provide\nshade and cooler temperatures for mushrooms, and fallen branches or leaves will\nalso provide organic material for mushrooms to feed on.\n\n\n\nIf you have been getting lots of cloudy days and rainfall in\nyour area, this will provide mushrooms with the shady, moist, and humid\nconditions that they prefer. Also\nremember that over watering your garden can keep your soil too moist, which can\nalso invite mushroom growth.\n\n\n\nHow to Get Rid of Mushrooms In Your Garden\n\n\n\nIf you already have mushrooms in your garden, keep in mind\nthat they are a natural part of the decomposition process, especially if you\nhave lots of wood in your garden. \nHowever, if you want to get rid of them for aesthetic purposes, here are\nsome ways you can do it.\n\n\n\nPick or Cut The Mushrooms\n\n\n\nSome mushrooms are poisonous, so use gloves to handle\nthem. Use a knife to cut them off, and throw\nthem away. Don\u2019t eat them or feed them\nto animals, since it is difficult to identify which mushrooms are safe to eat.\n\n\n\nAlso, don\u2019t compost the mushrooms. While you may be able to compost mushrooms,\nyou may also end up with mushrooms taking over your compost pile. After all, mushrooms contain the spores of\nthe rest of the fungus that lives underground!\n\n\n\nRake or Dig Up The Mushrooms\n\n\n\nThis method is helpful if you have lots of mushrooms in your\nlawn. You should be able to break the\nmushrooms up with a rake without pulling up your grass.\n\n\n\nUse a shovel to dig up mushrooms or rake them away, but don't put them in your compost pile or they might take it over!\n\n\n\nA rake might not work so well in your garden, especially if\nit is crowded with plants, or if there is lots of compost, mulch, and other\nmaterial strewn about. In that case, you\ncan also use a shovel to target specific areas of mushroom growth.\n\n\n\nMow Over the Mushrooms\n\n\n\nYou can also mow over mushrooms in your lawn. Although this method is low-effort, remember\nthat the spores can still spread around.\n\n\n\nHow to Prevent Mushrooms From Growing\n\n\n\nOnce you\u2019ve gotten rid of the mushrooms in your garden, you\nwill want to take steps to prevent them from growing in the future. Here are a few ways to do it.\n\n\n\nGet Rid of Dead Wood in Your Garden\n\n\n\nIf you have any fallen trees, branches, stumps, or logs in\nyour garden, get rid of them. You can\nsplit them into firewood and sell it or store it somewhere far away from your\ngarden.\n\n\n\nFallen trees are sure to host mushrooms eventually.\n\n\n\nIf you have any dead or dying trees in or near your garden,\ncut them down safely. You can tell a\ntree is dead if it doesn\u2019t form any leaves in the spring, or if mushrooms are\ngrowing on it.\n\n\n\nMulch can be helpful to retain moisture and prevent weeds in\nyour garden. However, mulch made from\nwood chips can promote the growth of mushrooms. \nSo, avoid using wood chip mulch on areas of your garden that are\nnaturally shady or moist.\n\n\n\nPrune Back or Cut Down Trees\n\n\n\nEven living, healthy trees in your yard can promote the\ngrowth of mushrooms, since the shade provided by branches can keep your garden\nshady, cool, and moist. To prevent this,\nprune back branches that hang over your garden.\n\n\n\nYou may also find that mushrooms are growing at the base of\ntrees due to shade. You can take the\nstep of cutting down an entire tree, but it is an extreme measure. Make sure to do so safely, and hire a\nprofessional if you are not sure about how to do it.\n\n\n\nKeep Your Soil Drained\n\n\n\nTo prevent mushrooms from growing in your garden, try to let the soil dry between waterings. Don\u2019t water before or after a rainstorm. When you do water your plants, water them deeply and infrequently, rather than providing shallow and frequent water.\n\n\n\nYou may also want to try using drip irrigation instead of a sprinkler or hose. This allows you to control the precise amount of water your plants get.\n\n\n\nYou should consider the possibility that you are giving your plants and your garden too much water or watering too frequently. For more information, check out my article on over watering your plants.\n\n\n\nAnother step you can take is to improve drainage by digging trenches\nand installing pipes to divert water away from wet areas of your garden.\n\n\n\nIf you find that your soil stays wet for a long time, it\nmight be a good idea to improve the drainage. \nOne good way to do this is to add compost to your soil. The additional organic material will improve\ndrainage and provide nutrients for your plants.\n\n\n\nClay soil drain poorly and retains water, so you may need to add compost to supplement organic material and improve drainage.\n\n\n\nFor more information, check out my article on how to improve soil drainage.\n\n\n\nConclusion\n\n\n\nAt this point, you should have a good idea of what to do to\nprevent mushrooms from growing in your garden. \nNow that you are armed with the knowledge, it\u2019s time to put it into\naction in your garden!\n\n\n\nHopefully, this article was helpful and informative. If you have any questions or advice of your\nown about mushrooms in your garden, please leave a comment below.