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Often times, after heavy periods of rain, some trees may sprout mushrooms at the base of the trunk.  They grow fast, and are a very important sign that something could be wrong with your tree.  Mushrooms are known as fruiting bodies; meaning they are a specimen that produces spore of a fungus.  There are many different types of fungus, but the one to be most wary of, with regards to your trees, is the Armillaria Species.  Armillaria is a parasitic fungi that causes root rot and could prove deadly to hardwoods like Oak, Elms, and Honey Locust Trees.

A couple of ways to identify these fruiting bodies, which are often called honey mushrooms, is to examine their appearance.  If the mushrooms on your tree are yellowish in color, with a white rim around their stems and a flat shaped cap, you likely have Armillaria.  A second way to confirm if your mushrooms are honey mushrooms is their smell. Honey Mushrooms got their name because of the sweet smell they let off.  Unfortunately, there is typically very few signs of this root rotting fungus until the mushrooms sprout, and by then it is too late.  Your tree might appear completely healthy, but that does not mean you can ignore this alarming symptom.  Armillaria invades the roots and wood of the tree, extracting all the nutrients for it's own survival.  Once infected, the structural integrity of the tree is completely compromised and there is rarely an option for treatment, removal being the only solution.

It's very important that you call a certified arborist for an inspection as soon as you spot mushrooms on the base of your tree.  One infected tree can pose great danger for the rest of the trees on your property.  Special precautionary steps, such as removing as much of the roots as possible, should be taken to avoid the spread of this invasive pathogen.

Got Mushrooms?  Don't wait, call us immediately at 914-725-0441.


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