Scary Lawn Issues
Some lawn issues are downright spooky. Here are five spine-chilling problems to keep an eye out for in your lawn and landscaping.
No, these aren’t the cute blow-up spiders you use to decorate your lawn. They’re the spiders that decorate for you, covering your grass with their funnel-shaped webs. Interestingly, only female grass spiders can make webs. They hide at the bottom of the funnel until they sense an insect on the web, then dart out to capture it. If you’re not easily spooked, you can use a grass blade to tap the edge of a web and trick the spider into running out for what it thinks is its next meal — what a treat!
Speaking of cobwebs, does your lawn or landscaping look like it needs to be dusted? If you see a dusty whitish coating on the leaves of your plants, it’s probably powdery mildew. A common plant disease, powdery mildew creates a thin, dry fungus on the surface of leaves.
Need an impromptu Halloween decoration? Look no further than your lawn. There are more than 900 species of slime mold, which is technically not mold at all. Slime molds have a mucous surface during parts of their life cycle and vary in color, feeding on fungi and bacteria.
Dead Man’s Fingers Fungus
This fungus looks as creepy as its name suggests. With elongated mushrooms that have light-colored tips, dead man’s fingers fungus resembles a decaying human hand. It grows in areas of dead or dying wood, including tree bark, roots, and mulch. In case any of that sounds appetizing, note that it’s not known as an edible mushroom.
Dog Vomit Slime Mold
This harmless slime mold won’t hurt anything but your appetite. Don’t worry, though — it’s not what it looks like. Like other slime molds, this one feeds on decomposing material. For that reason, it often grows in mulch beds after heavy rains.