Gray Snow Mold

Typhula incarnata, T. ishikariensis

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  • Gray snow mold is caused by Typhula incarnata and related species. It is a true snow mold and appears as roughly circular bleached patches up to 60 cm in diameter. Severe outbreaks develop in areas of prolonged, persistent snow cover. Soon after the snow melts, the infected grass may be matted and surrounded by a white to gray halo of fluffy fungal growth. Tiny tan or brown pea-like structures are on or imbedded in infected leaves. The severity of the disease will vary. It is particularly severe when turf has been subjected to prolonged, deep, compacted snow cover. Bentgrass is most susceptible. Although the disease is unsightly, it rarely kills the grass. This fungus produces sclerotia to help it survive the summer months and in late fall; when conditions are favorable, these sclerotia may produce mycelium that produce spores. Mycelium from the spores or sclerotia grow out and infect new plants under cover of deep snow during the winter. Where gray snow mold has occurred once, it is likely to recur if left unmanaged.

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