Identification: What is this fungus and how to control it?

Discussion in 'Fungi, Lichens and Slime Molds' started by Uk_gardener, Jul 9, 2017.

  1. Uk_gardener

    Uk_gardener New Member

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    Hi I'm based in the UK and am desperate to get rid of this fungus/strange weed. It goes back in about 10days to same size and I believe has a underground root system.

    Any help identifying this and advice on how to get rid of this would be greatly appreciated.

    I have searched many site but cannot seem to find anything similar..

    Uk gardener.

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  2. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Renowned Contributor UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  3. Frog

    Frog Well-Known Member Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    B.C., Canada
    I agree with Daniel, it appears to be Xylaria polymorpha.
    In our region, PNW, this would typically be a maple tree eater. Not sure what it would be on in your area: For more regional information you could consult one of the many clubs in the UK affiliated with the British Mycological Society.
    Likely it is inhabiting a stump or tree, or perhaps buried roots of a former tree. If for example it was eating buried stump remains and was nowhere near a live tree, you could try extracting the food source, the stump. But if there are other trees of a type it eats anywhere nearby, it would be hard to tell what precisely it is eating. Ditto if the soils contains lots of woody debris.
    Also, keep in mind that what you are seeing are the fruiting bodies, the mushrooms of this fungus. The rest of the fungus is inside the wood it is eating.
    The Xylarias I am familiar with are white rotters, efficiently breaking down both lignin and cellulose. So it can be useful in development of soil.
    I hope that is useful.
    I too am curious about why you are needing to get rid of it.
    - frog
  4. vitog

    vitog Well-Known Member

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    Burnaby, Canada
    Note that Michael Kuo states that X. polymorpha is a saprobic fungus, which means that it only feeds on dead plant material. It should not be harmful to any living plants.

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