Mushrooms growing on your lawn can be unsightly. In some cases, they can pose a risk when children and pets are around. One of the ways homeowners deal with mushrooms on lawns is by applying baking soda directly to the mushrooms and the surrounding soil. But is killing mushrooms with baking soda really effective?
Killing mushrooms with baking soda has been a common practice among homeowners. It is non-toxic and readily available. Mushrooms thrive in an acidic environment but when baking soda is applied, the pH of the soil is raised making it more alkaline. As a result, mushroom growth is interrupted.
But will baking soda have a lasting effect on mushrooms? In this article, we will discuss how a basic kitchen ingredient can be used to control mushrooms in your garden, as well as other tips you can use today to get rid of mushrooms. We will also talk about how long-lasting baking soda’s effect is on mushrooms.
Can I Use Baking Soda To Kill Mushrooms?
Mushrooms are usually beneficial to your garden. Their presence tells you that you have healthy soil rich in organic matter. But most of the time, they can take away your garden’s appeal. And as mentioned, children and pets may accidentally eat them. This becomes a real concern knowing that many mushroom species are poisonous.
Plucking mushrooms off your garden may make them disappear but it will never kill them. Think of them like an iceberg: the cap and stem are like the tip of the iceberg, but you’ll never know that beneath the surface of the soil, there’s so much more to the mushroom.
So what will kill mushrooms then? To effectively kill mushrooms, you need to literally dig deep and work on the spores rather than just the stem and the cap. Will baking soda do the job?
Baking Soda as a Fungicide?
Baking soda, or chemically known as sodium bicarbonate, raises pH levels. When applied on the soil as in the purpose of getting rid of mushrooms, it makes it alkaline. The soil then becomes an undesirable environment for mushrooms and thus, impedes their growth.
For this reason, baking soda has been touted as an effective agent in killing mushrooms, or fungicide by many home gardeners. However, the truth is baking soda’s effect may not last that long; it cannot entirely guarantee mushrooms will disappear forever.
In alkaline conditions, fungi will stop growing but once the soil conditions improve, they could return. That said, a better classification for baking soda is fungistatic, rather than a fungicide.
What Type Of Baking Soda Should I Use To Kill Mushrooms?
Just about any kind of baking soda you can find in your kitchen can be used against mushrooms. This is why the baking soda method is preferred by many homeowners, They can easily head to the kitchen for the solution.
There is no need to rush to any garden store to buy fungicides or fungistatic – baking soda is readily available. Arm & Hammer baking soda is one brand that’s trusted by many.
How Do I Get Rid Of Mushrooms In My Yard With Baking Soda?
If you’re concerned about harming your landscape with harmful commercial fungicides, then alternative solutions like baking soda will work. Below are easy step-by-step instructions on killing mushrooms with baking soda.
Killing Mushrooms With Baking Soda Step By Step
Using baking soda to inhibit mushroom growth involves the following easy steps:
Start off by mixing a solution of 2 tbsp of baking soda and 1 gallon of water. Place the solution in a bucket.
Mix your solution well by stirring constantly until the baking soda has completely dissolved.
Transfer some solution to a garden spray. The amount will depend on your spray bottle and how prolific the mushrooms on your lawn are.
Spray on the mushroom caps and stem. You can also spray the surrounding soil. Tip: A garden pump spray works best. Try this portable garden pump sprayer.
An alternative would be to sprinkle baking soda on the soil and water it to dissolve it in.
Other Mushroom Control Tips
Besides baking soda, there are several ways on how you can keep mushrooms at bay. The following have been found to also help manage mushroom growths in your garden.
If using baking soda to kill mushrooms isn’t working for you, then vinegar is another great and natural alternative that should do the trick. We actually wrote a helpful article that covers how to kill mushrooms with vinegar, that you should definitely check that out.
How Long Does It Take To Kill Mushrooms With Baking Soda?
When mixed with water, baking soda acts as a fungicide the helps in killing mushrooms. When done the right way, you can expect mushrooms to die out in three to four days.
It’s important to remember however that Fungicides do not kill mushrooms directly. Mushrooms can and often do rear their ugly head later on depending on the condition of the soil.
If mushrooms just keep popping up in your garden, fertilizing your soil might solve the problem. In this case, a nitrogen-rich fertilizer, such as Miracle-Gro Shake ‘N Feed helps increase the rate at which fungi deteriorate. This way, you won’t give mushrooms a chance to thrive.
Mushrooms are generally considered an unwelcome yet beneficial garden guest. Though mushrooms signal a healthy soil state, too much would also mean problems for your garden. Prolific mushroom growth can also mean water is not draining well.
If left unchecked, problems will become worse and your overall soil and plant health will soon be compromised. As a quick and safe remedy, people turn to sodium bicarbonate, or baking soda as an effective remedy.
While baking soda does a good job at controlling mushroom growths, it’s good to note that it is not a fungicide. Instead, it’s fungistatic, only working temporarily against mushrooms until such time that the soil conditions become conducive to their growth. A much better approach will be applying baking soda in conjunction with good gardening practices.