What Is Mold on Plant Soil? How to get rid of it?

Molds on plant soils are common and harmful. The scary mold appears in your soil overnight. The white or grey mold spread on your soil might not be your first thought when planning for indoor gardening. But the responsibility goes a long way from just watering to controlling pests and in between disease clearance such as molds and various other fungal diseases.

Understanding the reason for the problem and getting rid of it will help you be a better gardener. Below you will learn some tips and tricks to identify, prevent and remedy the problem of mold affecting your plants.

What Is Mold on Plant Soil?

Mold is a fungal disease that affects plants and vegetation, commonly known as Powdery mildew. The molds can be white, yellow, grey, sooty, or powdery. The white and yellow molds are harmless and form a thread in the soil making visible appearances on the soil. 

The molds can be formed all over the soil if left untreated. A sooty mold appearance can be found in diseased leaves. Molds can appear because of an imbalance in soil composition. Molds are often found in soil where there is no soil balance such as nutrient and mineral variation.

How Do You Identify Mold on Plants?

How to identify mold on plants?

Molds usually appear in soil or plants. Molds appear in your soil overnight. Mold looks like a patchy white thread layer on the soil surface. If left untreated they take the root and decay it. You can identify a mold in the first stage with the smell of the soil. 

Decaying matter or debris is the best place for fungus to grow. They can take over the flower, leaves, stems, and not just the soil. The mild powdery substance on leaves is also a symptom of mold disease in your soil. Checking for diseases and preventing them at an early stage will help stop the damage from the white bolt.

What are the main causes of Mold on Plants?

Fungal diseases thrive in damp places. Indoor plants create such a condition easily. The following can be the cause of your plant getting a fungal too.

Air circulation

Providing the right air circulation is first to avoid any type of disease in both the plant and soil. Poor air circulation could be a reason you found mold in your soil as they thrive in dark and damp places.


Overwatering can be a reason as people treat indoor and outdoor plants the same while watering. As outdoor plants need more water due to exposure to sunlight and air. Indoor plants need water once a week. Add water only according to the needs of the plant.


Overwatering leads to poor drainage which becomes the food for fungal-like mold. Poor drainage soil becomes the breeding ground for molds. The moist soil attracts every type of disease. Making adjustments to soil can improve drainage.


Removing the debris around the plants in the soil will help. As dead leaves or any other decomposes around the soil in a pot is ideal for fungi to grow. Remove the dead doon before they pile near the plant as they feed on decomposing plant matter.

Soil Quality

This part everyone’s miss and blames on mold. Checking the soil quality and verifying that soil is free of pests andfungis is a must before using it. For potting soil, it is a must as it will be placed also inside the house. Using unhealthy soil can cause mold in your soil.


  • Place the plant in sunlight for a few minutes or artificial light to help them dry.
  • Avoid pouring water and spraying water in an amount that the soil absorbs.
  • If there is mild mold, keep the plant outdoors for a day to get light and air. Choose another place for the plant when you keep it indoors with little breeze.

Is mold harmful to plants?

Is mold in plants harmful

Molds are not harmful to your plants but they can be to you if you are allergic to them. Molds can affect your plant depending on its presence of it in the soil and its type. White molds are not harmful whereas grey ones are. Depending on the severity of the fungus mold on plant soil harms the plants and the soil with it.

What are the Best ways to get rid of mold on plant soil?

These are the five best ways to get rid of mold on your plants,

Physical removal– In case of mild mold affected in the soil, remove the fungus with hands in protective gear. Wear a mask and scrape off the mold with your mini shovel. And dispose of the affected soil.

Repotting– If mold is found in the soil, try repotting plants and use a new pot for the plant. Using a terra-cotta pot prevents most diseases in soil and plants. Using a sterile pot prevents the fungal diseases

Sunlight treatment– If mold is mild in the soil, scrape it off and dispose of it. Keeping the plant in direct sunlight and letting it dry out will kill the mold. The sunlight treatment can be done as a precaution to avoid disease in indoor plants. 

Use Neem oil– Using the neem oil on mold kills them immediately. Spraying the neem water acts as an anti-fungal in the soil which prevents the soil from the fungal. 

Use hydrogen peroxide– Hydrogen peroxide is a pesticide as well as a fungicide. This is used on any type of soil to prevent diseases in the soil.

How to kill mold on plant soil?

Getting rid of the mold in plants

The best way to kill mold is through natural remedies. 

Use Vinegar– Add vinegar to the soil and spray to avoid and kill the fungus with the home remedy.

Use Baking soda– Use the baking soda directly on the fungus to make them die instantly. Using vinegar and baking soda should be in a lesser amount and with precaution as they affect the plant in the soil.

Kill at sight– Immediately killing at sight with hand removal with a damp cloth or others will help in reducing the spread.

Use fungicides– Using any chemical fertilizer also helps in killing the mold from the soil.

How to prevent mold on plant soil?

Using healthy soil– Check the soil before planting and use the healthy soil to have a fungus-free plant and soil. This might even prevent the fungus from the old soil as the new soil is sterile and filled with the right nutrients.

Using sterile pot– The sterile and good pot also plays a major role in having a fungus in your soil. As they are the starting point of fungus transfer.

Having a watering schedule– overwatering is a cause of fungus show. Scheduling the watering for plants helps in avoiding the fungus as they grow in damp places.

Giving the right amount of air and sunlight– Keeping the indoor plant in a shady but breezy place is a must. As they have given the right amount of sunlight and air to plants.

Cleaning debris and keeping it clean plants avoid both pest and fungus diseases in plants. 

In conclusion, mold on plant soil is very easy to prevent and treat. My advice is adding a natural fungicide is better than a chemical one and giving regular checks will prevent any type of disease in your indoor plants. Double-check matters as they stay inside your home.


Are mold and perlite the same?

No, they both look similar but perlite is a volcanic particle used to improve soil quality.