Don’s Expert Answers: Very hard cream fungus, quite thick. It’s very hard, like a stone when you step on it in the lawn.

Question From: 
Prue in  Annandale, Sydney, inner west,  Sydney NSW


Nature of problem: 
Very hard cream fungus, quite thick. It’s very hard, like a stone when you step on it in the lawn.


Type of Plant (if known): 


Symptoms of Plant Illness (please try NOT to diagnose your problems yourself): 
No illness


Soil Type (e.g. sandy, clay or loam) OR Potting Mix Type: 
Clay (I think)


How often do you water the plant:
Once a week if it doesn’t rain


How many hours of sunlight does the plant get each day:
Western sun – three in winter, five to six in summer.


What type of plant is it:
Fungus appears in lawn (Sir Walter Buffalo) and around the base of healthy magnolia, sapium, salvia plants.


How long since you planted it:
I only noticed it last year and this year. It grows in winter, but it’s growing like topsy this rainy summer.


Have you fertilised? If so, with what and when:
I’ve tried to kill it with Yates Anti-Root Rot, and Furalaxyl


Is the plant indoors or outdoors: 


Is the plant in a pot or in the ground: 
In the lawn, and around the base of healthy shrubs and trees. I can see its threads in the soil


What other treatments have you given the plant: 
I dig it out of the lawn, or cut it off the bases of shrubs and trees. And I’ve applied Yates Anti-Root Rot and Furalaxyl.

Upload photo if available: 
Base of sapium.jpg

Other Comments: 
This is a very hard fungus. It is white-ish, then goes cream then orange as it ages. It grows like a thick plate in the lawn, growing outwards from a central point. It also grows in semi circular shelves around the bases of my little gem magnolia, my sapium tree and my salvia. It also grows around the bases of the bricks I place around the bases of new shrubs to keep them steady in the wind. It grows mainly in the shadow case by the sapium. I have thinned the foliage on the sapium and removed the leaf debris from the garden beds and the base of the trees. Is there any chance of an ID? (it’s the white-ish spot in the middle of the photo) (see the base of the stem on the right)


Answer: Hi Prue, I am not a mycologist, but these look a bit lika a slime mould – Google “images slime moulds”. They were once classified as fungi but are now plasmodia (myxomycete). It seems to ba a’dog’s vomit “fungus” ’. Normally they are rather soft & fluid, but some aren’t.