Name that fungus(?)

Name that fungus(?)

Can anyone help me identify what this might be? I assume it’s a fungus, as it’s been very slowly growing in size on the side of my house. Pretty much doubled in size over two years. Been hesitant to deal with it, as I don’t know what it is or what chemicals, if any, I should use. Was hoping it would die through two winters, but as that’s not the case it looks like it’s time to figure out how to get rid of it. Thanks all!

DoxieMommy DoxieMommy
May '19

Looks like moss to me. I would simply peel it off and clean the area with a bit of good old TSP.

If it was moss it would have a greenish color to it. May not be easy to tell from a picture but it doesn't look green. In any case, cover it first to prevent any spores if it is fungus. Then remove and wash with strong bleach to kill what is there. Then comes the fun part of trying to figure out where the water is coming from and stop that. Without getting to the bottom of where the leak is, it'll just keep coming back.

What is TSP?

Mrs.Ward Mrs.Ward
May '19


TSP is TriSodiumPhosphate which is a cleaner that could normally be found in a Hardware Store's Paint Department. They make other more environmentally (as well as personally) safe products that can be used for mold, mildew and general fungal mitigation. Scott's makes one though I don't remember the name. If you go to Lowes or Home Depot you'll find a number of products in both the Paint, Household Cleaning and Seasonal Sections (usually next to the bug sprays and in with the patio and lawn furniture cleaners in Seasonal).


GC is quite correct in that you need to find out where the moisture is coming from, though if it's on the North side of the house where you get no sun and very little breeze due to nearby trees or bushes, it may be time to clear the vegetation in that area away from the house to let air circulate more freely in the area. Sometimes you get a lot of mildew, or other growth on siding if there's blockage of the natural breeze too close to the house by either trees, bushes or a nearby stockade fence. I have that battle at my own place constantly on the North side of the house.

Phil D. Phil D.
May '19

Believe it or not, get some simple cleaning vinegar in a spray bottle or white straight 100 percent vinegar and after removing the initial fungus, clean with same.

Do pool covers covered in brown/green mold and this is the way to go:)

We live in a moist environment here in Hackettstown, I would try spray and forget sold at home depot. It works on any green moss as well as the dark stain on light colored roof shingles. Just follow the instructions.

Robert J Rowe Robert J Rowe
May '19

Thanks Robert J Rowe,

That's one of the other products I was thinking about, but hadn't mentioned by name. While I'd normally agree with vinegar (or bleach, but not at the same time or while residue of one or the other is still there), they both can be dangerous for animals or affect your nearby plants, whereas spray and forget is much safer. Vinegar, after all, is diluted acetic acid.

If you choose to use vinegar, just make sure you only wet the cloth used to wipe off the remainder of the fungus and test for colorfastness before trying it. Wet a Q-tip and rub it on an inconspicuous place to see what happens. If it doesn't remove or discolor the paint/finish, then wet the cloth and wipe it down. If you choose to spray, do it sparingly and make sure it's not windy, as it will not make your eyes happy and will need to be flushed immediately with cold water, but then, that goes for any product.

By the way, I use a cup of white distilled vinegar in the rinse cycle of my laundry. It does wonders for hard water. I also use Glacial Acetic Acid at times at work, which is the commercially strong version. Not stuff to be taken lightly! Best of luck!

Phil D. Phil D.
May '19

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