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IS THIS THE DREADED HONEY FUNGUS??

Back again for more advice  please.
Been away for 3 weeks and come back to find this covering the  old Rowan tree stump.
Please can anyone tell me....>
What  it is?
Can  I just  leave  it to finish  off the stump or should  i try to get rid  of  it?
If so how do I  kill it off?
As always many thanks for any advice .
John.

PS re  my earlier   cry for help regarding the soil in the garden being dry etc
now  ive  put a  lot of water  into it it would appear to be  OK so thanks  again.

Posts

  • steephillsteephill Posts: 2,479
    I think it is honey fungus, it might be Armillaria ostoyae rather than Armillaria mellea but neither is good news. If you peel back some of the bark from the stump you should find black bootlace rhizomorphs. Can you get clear close up shot of the underside of a couple of the mushrooms showing the gills and ring on the stem?
    There are also some bracket fungi on the stump - the brown frills with a white edge sometimes called Turkeytail, Trametes versicolor.
    Your only course of action is to remove the stump and surrounding soil if you find rhizomorphs in it.
  • As suggested here are some  pix  of the fungus and bark if anyone can help please.
    Ive had a  look at the bark and dug  into the soil surrounding the tree stump  but 
    I cant see any rhizome , black  bootlace type growths so Im crossing  my fingers   and hope you can  settle  my doubts.
    Many thanks
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 32,425
    looks like it to me. 
    Does it smell exactly the same as mushroom soup?
    Devon.
  • Well  thanks for that. You might have let me down a bit more gently though..... lol
    Im 75 years old  and cant see me  getting that sump right  out. I can cut it to ground  level, would that help at all given the very  limited space to work in. Its between two walls. A main wall carrying the fencing and a  lower wall forming the side  of the raised bed?
    Can you tell me EXACTLY what to look for regarding these  rhizome things. I cant see anything resembling black thread like growths.
    Im an absolute beginner in the garden as  it was  my wife's domain before she had a stroke so  if  possible  please keep it simple.
    Thanks 

  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 32,425
    The tread-like growth look like thin shoe laces
    Devon.
  • TopbirdTopbird Mid SuffolkPosts: 7,230
    edited November 2021
    You may find this article from the RHS useful to read. Apart from anything else it has some good photos showing the most important things to look for when ID'ing honey fungus. 

    https://www.rhs.org.uk/disease/honey-fungus

    Sad to say but I agree with the others that your stump does look as if it has been infected.

    I have HF in my garden and I have never knowingly seen any rhizomorphs / bootlaces and the RHS does say they can be difficult to spot. I have, however, had the white mycelium smelling strongly of mushrooms which the RHS reckons is the best guide to identifying HF.

    If you can't remove the stump I would suggest frequently cultivating the soil as much and as deeply as possible around the stump. With a fair wind you'll break up and disperse any rhizomorphs that may be in the soil and break the route of the HF from the dead stump to living plants.

    If you can cut out / saw through as many roots as possible that will help reduce the underground wood presence and I think that cutting back as much of the stump as possible will do no harm.

    If you have any particularly vulnerable, prized plants (see the RHS list) in the vicinity you could consider installing a root barrier per the RHS advice but I've always considered that too much like hard work....


    Heaven is ... sitting in the garden with a G&T and a cat while watching the sun go down
  • didywdidyw East SuffolkPosts: 2,075
    That is definitely honey fungus I'm afraid. Those white bits just under the bark are the main giveaway (apart from the fruiting bodies of course).  The black bootlaces are more like threads and very difficult to see.  It will spread so if you have any other susceptible shrubs/trees nearby they will eventually succumb.  Can you get a working party of friends/relatives together to get the stump out?  You'll then need to remove every bit of root you can find and not plant anything else there that is at all susceptible to honey fungus.
  • Yes. It does smell of  mushroom soup alas.
    Ill try to remove the stump of course but given the  lack of space to work in 
    I cant see how at present but  i will hack at  it and see what happens.
    Thanks to you all for the advice you've given  me .
    Regards, John
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 32,425
    detainer said:
    Yes. It does smell of  mushroom soup alas.
    Ill try to remove the stump of course but given the  lack of space to work in 
    I cant see how at present but  i will hack at  it and see what happens.
    Thanks to you all for the advice you've given  me .
    Regards, John
    Unless you really want to get rid of the stump, I'd just leave it. 
    I'd say it's almost impossible to guarantee you'll get rid of the HF so no point " busting a gut " to remove the stump IF you can live with it.
    Devon.
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