Snow_Mold

Snow Mold Signs and Prevention

Jan 21, 2016 Homeowner Tips

Snow mold is a fungal disease that appears on grass as snow begins to melt. It often grows in patches, but can cover your entire lawn. Typically, when snow covers your lawn for more than 40-60 days, there will be snow mold as temperatures increase and the snow begins to melt. Contrary to its name, snow is not always necessary for the disease to occur. Cool, wet temperatures can also cause snow mold to form. Snow mold will appear as irregularly-shaped circles, and can be as small as two inches across, to over a foot.

Types of Snow Mold

Gray Snow Mold – Caused by Typhula spp. or Typhula blight, gray snow mold is the milder of the two molds and is the most common. It generally affects the blades of grass and not the roots. This type of mold grows when snow covers an area of grass for more than 40 days at a time.

Pink Snow Mold – Most often affecting golf courses, pink snow mold (caused by Microdochium nivale) is the more severe mold, and does not require snow to grow. Not only will it kill individual blades of grass, but also attacks and kills crowns and roots.

Prevention

  • Take Care of Turf Grass in the Summer – If you want your lawn to be strong and healthy going into winter, you need to apply fertilizers at the correct time.
  • Rake Leaves and Remove Debris – Leaves left on the grass over winter will trap more moisture as snow begins to fall and covers your lawn. Along with leaves, remove debris from around the yard. Anything that traps moisture will cause mold to grow.
  • Remove Snow – This sounds obvious, and it is. As snow plows drive more and more snow onto your walkways and lawns, uneven melting can occur, leaving you with grass patches and snow heaps. Removing the snow allows the grass to ventilate, so the quicker you remove it, the better.
  • Mowing the Lawn – Mow the lawn until it stops growing, but make sure the blades are no longer than 3 inches. In addition, manage thatch accumulation to no more than 2 inches.

Treatment

So you have snow mold, now what? This is an easier fix with gray mold, but both are treatable. For gray mold, gently rake the affected area(s) and reseed. For pink mold, it’s necessary to apply fungicides (be very careful) to remove the mold and heal the grass down to the root. Learn more about fungicides and what type you need for your lawn, here.

Can Snow Mold Damage My House?

Grass near the sides of your home, in window wells or in crawl spaces can be susceptible to snow mold. And while it is unlikely snow mold will affect the interior of your home, it can damage the outside of it and be a health hazard near door openings and windows. Mold prevention and treatment, whether it be in your home or on your lawn, is important to your health and safety. Remember J&L for all of your restoration needs in the Lansing area. Contact us here today for a guaranteed response within 60 minutes.

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