Diseases and pests of Mushroom

Diseases and pests of Mushroom


Mushroom is the fleshy, spore bearing fruiting body of fungus grown above the ground on soil or on unused food sources. The most cultivated mushroom in Nepal is mainly Pleurotus and Shitake mushroom. It is a rich source of nutrients, particularly proteins, minerals as well as vitamins B, C and D. Mushroom being a highly sensitive fungus often suffers from a variety of diseases and pest when the control measures for them in not adequate. The intensive cultivations of edible mushrooms can often be affected by some bacterial, mould and virus diseases that rather frequently causes dramatic production losses. The infections are particularly facilitated by warm temperatures, humidity, carbon dioxide (CO2) levels and presence of pests. Due to these reasons, mushroom growers are frequently challenged by mushroom diseases of bacterial and fungal origin. Moreover, the insanitary habit followed by farmers has often led to origin of different pest in mushroom too.

Diseases and pests of Mushroom: –

A)Fungal diseases

1.Soft mildew or cobweb:-

C.O :- Dactylium dendroides


  • A fluffy, white, cobweb-like mould grows n the surface of the casing soil.
  • Initially white and later changes to ink colour.

Fig:Cob web disease

    Control: –

  • Good ventilation and prevent excess humidity.
  • PCNB (Pentachloro Nitro Benzene) @0.1 % and dithane Z-78 @0.2 %.

2.Brown Plaster mould: –

C.O :Papulospora byssina

Symptoms: –

  • Occurs on the cropping trees, initially cloudy white appearance and later changes to brown.
  • Originally fungus rises in compost.

Fig: Brown plaster mould

 Control: –

  • Maintain suitable temp. during spawn run and cropping.
  • 2% formalin.

3. White plaster mould

C.O: – Scopulariopsis fumicola

Symptoms: –

  • Resembles brown plaster mould initially but later changes to pink shade.

                    Fig: white plaster mould                    

 Control: –

  • Formalin 2% and dithane Z-78 @ 0.2 %.

4. Olive green mould

C.O: Chaetomium olivacearum


  • Appears in compost or spawn before casing.
  • Initially white and later changes to olive green.

Fig: Olive green mould

     Control: –

  • Temperature should be maintained below 600C during pasteurization
  • Spray 0.2 % thiram and captan @0.05% at trays.

5.Bubble disease: –

C.O: – Mycogone perniciosa


  • Dense white mat of mycelium leading to reduction in yield.
  • Swollen stalk and smaller cap at early stage.

Fig: bubble disease

     Control: –

  • Beds sterilised @2% formalin.
  • Spray dithane Z-78 @0.2% and benlate @ 0.05%

B) Bacterial Diseases

1.Bacterial Blotch: –

   C.O: – Pseudomonas tolaassi

     Symptoms: –

  • Appearance of irregular yellowish to dark brown slightly sunken blotches on the mushroom cap.

Fig: bacterial blotch

   Control: –

  • Choosing soil sterilization and proper ventilation.
  • Use of chlorinated water.
  • Spray of terramycin @9 mg/f on beds.

2.Wet spot/Sour rot: –

 C.O: Bacillus spp.


  • A dull gray to mucus-like brownish slime layer is seen.

                  Fig: wet spot

  Control: –

  • Soaking the grain at room temperature 12-24 hours prior to sterilization.

C) Viral Diseases

       1.Brown disease and watery stripe

       2.X disease

       3.Die back disease


  • Mushroom get shrivelled, leathery and brown coloured.
  • Stripe condition becomes watery and grey.
  • Delayed appearance of pinhead formation.

                    Fig:brown disease


  • Raise room temperature to 330C for 2 weeks and return to normal temperature.
  • Treating trays with 4% sodium pentachloro phenate ,0.5-1% soda solution.
  • Disinfecting doors, floors and walls @4% formaldehyde.

D) Insets pests: –

  • Affects the mushroom by laying eggs and larvae that feed on compost, eat away the mycelium and burrow the stalk of mushroom.
  • Insects includes Spring tails, phorids flies, Sciarid flies, mites, Nematodes.


  • Adult is dark in colour, cylinder bodies with long antennae.
  • Larva is more harmful than adult and feed on compost.
  • Larva makes tunnel shape cavity in mushroom.

        Fig: Sciarids

    Control: –

  • Sanitation and proper turnings during composting process.
  • Drenching of malathion @0.01% chlorofenvinphos @208 ml/ton.

2.Spring tails: –

  • Can’t be seen through naked eyes.
  • When in mass appears as gun powder.
  • Mostly feed on mycelium and attack stalk and caps.

     Control: –

  • Clean cultivation, proper pasteurization of compost and casing materials.
  • Use of 0.05 % malathion as spray for disinfection.
  • Spray dichlorvos at 0.025-0.05 % conc. During spawn run.

3. Phorids

  • Cause damage to mycelium and sometimes make tunnels.
  • Larva cause more damage than adult.

       Control: –

  • Sanitation and proper turnings during composting process.
  • Mixing the compost at spawning diazinon @ 200 g/ton.
  • Spray formalin @0.2% at casing.

4.Mites (Microphagous and Saprophagous mites): –

  • Feed on weed moulds and mycelium causing shrunken caps.
  • Causes complete destruction in buttons of button and tropical mushroom.

   Control: –

  • Sanitation and disposal of organic disposal.
  • Disinfect the mushroom house by spraying of dicofol @0.1%.
  • Spraying the compost with diazinon @105-2 ml/10 l of water.

 5.Nematods (Myceliophagous and saprophagous nematodes): –

  • Feed directly on mushroom mycelium and the fruiting bodies.
  • Suck nutrients from the substrate and spoil the structure and quality of the composts in cropping beds emitting foul smell.


  • The compost surface sinks.
  • Pin head turns brown, watery and remain stunted.
  • Compost become soggy and emits foul smell.

       Fig:  nematodes of mushroom


  • Sanitation and proper pasteurization of compost and casing materials.
  • Drenching mushroom houses with disinfectants.
  • Use of polythene bags and sterilization of empty trays or trolleys with formalin.

 References: –

  • Handbook of mushroom
  • Fletcher.J.T.;P.F. White and R.H. Gaze. 1989; Mushrooms: pest and disease control.2nd ed.; intercept Ltd.; pp174.
  • Garcha.H.s.;1978; Diseases of mushroom and their control; Indian Mushroom.Sci.vol.; pp185-191.

This Post Has One Comment

  1. great submit, very informative. I’m wondering why the opposite specialists of this sector do not realize this. You must proceed your writing. I am confident, you’ve a great readers’ base already!

Leave a Reply

Close Menu
error: Content is protected !!

Never miss an update.Subscribe us to get newsletter whenever we publish an update.

You have successfully subscribed to the newsletter

There was an error while trying to send your request. Please try again.

Scholars Space will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you and to provide updates and marketing.
%d bloggers like this: