Why Your Flowers are Molding and What to do about it?

There is nothing more discouraging than waking up one morning only to find that your garden has become a hazy mess of mold. Your roses are sprinkled with black spots, and a cast of foggy gray mold hides your once colorful flowers. What can you do? While this might be disappointing initially, the good news is that you can treat mold quickly and efficiently. 

So, why are your flowers molding, and what to do about it? The following issues cause most flower mold:

  • Your plants are being watered too often.
  • Your plants are not getting enough sunlight.
  • Your plants don’t have enough room.
  • Your plants are being poorly maintained.

Mold can occur in flowers planted outside or inside of pots. There are many ways to treat mold, though, from sanitizing soil to removing moldy leaves and being proactive about mold prevention.

If you are starting to notice an outbreak of mold on your flowers, all hope is not lost. There are several things you can do to help your flowers to grow healthy and strong again. The most important thing to remember is to act fast and get control before the disease begins to spread. In this article, we are going to discuss the causes and solutions for mold found on flowers. 

Most Commons Reasons for Molding Flowers

Before we can discuss how to get rid of mold and prevent future outbreaks, it’s essential to understand why your flowers are molding in the first place. There are a few different factors that can contribute to moldy flowers. Knowing the initial causes of mold can help you to make better choices in the future for your garden. 

1. Your Plants Are Being Watered Too Often

We all know the importance of water when it comes to a garden, especially flowers. Flowers need water to thrive and reach their potential. But remember – too much of a good thing isn’t always a good thing. While adequate water will keep your flowers from dying off, too much water can have an adverse effect.

Soil that is left damp too often becomes a breeding ground for bacteria. Fungus and bacteria love to grow in damper environments, which is why overwatering your garden can lead to mold infestation. This is even more prominent in pots or gardens that lack proper drainage, as the water will virtually sit in the soil endlessly and begin to produce bacteria. 

2. Your Plants Are Not Getting Enough Sunlight

Sunlight is another crucial thing to consider when growing flowers. Again, sunlight is an important aspect of growth for all kinds of plants. So, if you do not place your flowers strategically, you may find yourself with a mold problem simply because you did not find a good location for your flowers.

Sunlight is vital, not just because it helps a flower to grow, but because it will keep it from staying damp. Think about it this way – a plant that is placed in a shady area will remain wet, especially after rainfall. Wetness can lead to the harboring of bacteria and fungi, which will eventually lead to an unsightly mold problem.

3. Your Plants Don’t Have Enough Room

Did you know that planting your flowers too close together can lead to a mold problem, as well as other issues? For one, flowers planted together have a high chance of not being able to gather up enough nutrients from the soil. This leads to unhealthy flowers that don’t have a chance of being able to grow to their fullest potential.

Additionally, not enough space means that it’s easier for there to be a lack of circulation, which is a major contributing factor to flower diseases, as mentioned by “Causes of Mold in Flower Pots.” If the flowers are planted close together, when one leaf becomes infected, it will spread at a more rapid pace, which makes the issue worsen more quickly.

4. Your Plants Are Being Poorly Maintained

Not providing for your flowers the way they need will ultimately lead to disease at some point. If you are not trimming your plants, are planting them in low-quality soil, or are forgetting to do regular maintenance in general, you can be creating the mold problem.

Most Common Types of Mold

Now that we know some of the root causes behind a flower molding, we can dive into which mold types are the most common. After all, if you don’t know what the mold looks like, then you won’t have a good chance of handling the problem correctly. 

Three different types of mold are most common for flowers, as described by “Common Flower Diseases” by David Grist.

1. Powdery Mildew

While there are several different species of powdery mildew, the one thing they all share is their appearance. This mold looks exactly like a powdery substance that is splattered across your flower’s leaves. However, when the disease becomes more prominent, it will also move to the stems and actual flowers.

If left untreated, powdery mildew will eventually turn yellow and then brown. At this point, the leaves or other diseased parts of the flower are likely to fall off entirely. This is not good news, though, as the disease can spread into the soil and infect other plants or future plants.

Powdery mildew is unique because it does not lead to flower fatality, and it is mostly caused by excessively high humidity levels rather than poor maintenance or excessive watering. 

Controlling powdery mildew is also a cinch. Follow these instructions:

  • Make sure the plants have proper ventilation. This can be done by spacing your plants apart and always ensuring there are no weeds around. This will lead to better ventilation and less risk of too much humidity. If you have many pots of flowers inside, you can add a fan to help circulate the air, as well.
  • Always water at the base of the flower. This will lessen the chances of humidity forming on the flowers.
  • Remove infected leaves immediately. Once you see the disease beginning to form on your plants, remove the leaves entirely and toss them in the trash.
  • Consider using a flower spray. We highly recommend the BioAdvanced 708260D All-in-One Rose & Flower Spray (click to see on Amazon). It not only treats the mold, but it also kills insects and mites. It offers 14 days of rainproof protection for outside flowers, too.
  • Consider all-natural solutions. Some great natural solutions are discussed in the article, “Natural Remedies for White Fuzzy Mold on Plants” by Gabrielle Morgan. You can fight powdery mold using household goods like baking soda, milk, and vinegar. Oddly enough, even garlic can be used to fight this fungus.

2. Black Spot

Another prevalent flower disease is black spot, although it is most often found on roses. You can spot black spot on your roses on the leaf surfaces initially, and the spots can be as large as half an inch long. If left untreated, these spots will eventually turn the leaf yellow before causing it to fall off entirely.

Black spot is typically brought on by overwatering. It will usually arise as little as 7 hours into excessive wetness or dampness. 

Controlling black spot is relatively easy, but you need to act quickly. 

  • Dry your roses and keep them dry. Move them away from shady areas and find a spot where they can stay drier. It should be done right away to avoid spreading black spot. 
  • Don’t overwater. It’s simple – don’t overwater your roses, but don’t leave them to dry out. Also, make sure that there is adequate sunlight, drainage, and circulation to reduce the risk of black spot forming.

3. Gray Mold

Gray mold, also known as Botrytis, is a common disease found in flowers. As described in “Gray Mold” by Planet Natural, mushy gray spots begin to form on the leaves and stems. They will quickly develop a gray covering that resembles cotton balls. Gray mold is also commonly found in the soil and is brought on by too much water and cooler temperatures.

To help your plants suffering from gray mold, there are several things you should do right away:

  • Make sure your plants have proper circulation. This may mean you need to prune or stake your flowers. You can also consider transplanting them so that they are placed further apart. 
  • Remove any diseased areas right away. This will keep the infection from spreading. Remember, gray mold is quick to jump to nearby plants, so getting rid of the source will help significantly.
  • Make sure to keep the soil clean. You will want to ensure that the diseased soil is scooped up and discarded immediately. You will also want to rake the area often and keep it clean from any debris.
  • Consider adding compost or a light layer of mulch. Mulches can reduce the amount of infected soil from splashing up and hitting your plants again. 
  • Use neem oil. Neem oil is said to be great for stopping mold dead in its tracks. We highly recommend the Bonide (BND022) – Ready to Use Neem Oil (click link to see on Amazon). This 3-in-1 fungicide, insecticide, and miticide is cheap and is guaranteed to get the job done!

Help for Potted Plants

Of course, the same mold can show up on your indoor potted plants as well. However, it may be a bit trickier to handle this situation than if your flowers were planted outside in the ground. “How To Get Rid Of Mold In Houseplant Soil” explains some great ways of dealing with moldy houseplants. 

Indeed, a moldy house plant sitting in your windowsill is unsightly and may even gross you out a little bit. But don’t worry – there is a three-step solution that will ensure the mold problem is taken care of. 

Follow these simple steps, and you will be successful at removing the disease from your current flowers and future flowers.

  1. Start by removing the mold from the soil. 
    • The first thing you need to do is get the mold out of your soil as soon as possible. Now that you know exactly what to look for, it will be easier. If the mold is found on the leaves or flowers, though, you should remove those as well. Remember that these diseases are harmless to humans, but they can cause your flower to become unattractive or die off completely.
  2. Let the soil dry out completely.
    • You might consider placing your potted flower in the sun so that the soil can dry out. Remember that wet or damp soil is a breeding ground for mold, so if you want to stop the problem, you need to let the soil dry out completely. If your flower cannot survive in dry soil, wait at least until the surface is dry before watering ever-so-slightly.
  3. Add anti-fungal products to your soil. 
    • You can buy a great anti-fungal product like Jobe’s Organics Soil Acidifier, 6 lb, (link to Amazon) or go the natural way and add cinnamon, apple cider vinegar, or baking soda to your soil. These ingredients will work as a barrier to disease, so it doesn’t come back and destroy your plant. 
  4. Keep the soil clean. 
    • This is true for outdoor and indoor plants, potted or not! Always make sure that the soil is kept clean, especially if you notice any rotting, molded materials sitting on top of the soil. If you are adding compost to your soil, you should also make sure that your compost is free of diseases.
  5. Keep your plants clean and adequately maintained.
    • The best thing you can do to get rid of bacteria and prevent future mold outbreaks from occurring is always to make sure that your plants are kept clean and are being properly maintained. 
  6. Don’t reuse the same pot without proper sterilization.
    • If you decide to start new with a fresh flower plant, don’t place the flower in the same soil and pot. Unless the soil is completely sterilized, you shouldn’t use it. The same goes for the container. Spores can continue to live in these areas, and adding a new plant to the same infected region is asking for reinfection. 

Tips for Preventing Mold

Knowing how to treat mold is only half of the battle. Knowing how to prevent mold from ever forming is even more critical. 

Here are some excellent tips for preventing mold on your flowers:

  • Always trim your flowers. Whether you see mold forming or not, it is still a good idea to keep your plants trimmed. This will ensure that there are no ‘extra’ leaves or dead leaves that are more prone to becoming diseased. If you do see any disease forming, it is even more essential to act and cut off the infected parts right away.
  • Don’t add too much water. Your flowers need water to grow, of course, but too much water is going to cause disease in no time. Therefore, keep watering to a minimum and make sure there is proper drainage.
  • Start with good soil. Using low-quality soil is never a good idea, and this is especially true for a garden that seems to have a mold problem. A good layer of compost will ensure that there are plenty of nutrients, and the soil is blocked from harming your plants.
  • Think about the environment. Remember that your plants need sunlight. Sunlight helps them grow and keeps bacteria at bay. Keep your flowers away from shady areas that can leave the plant wet and prone to high humidity.
  • Make sure there is enough ventilation. Ventilation is critical to ensuring that your flowers don’t fall victim to high humidity levels, which is a significant cause of many molds and fungi. Keeping your flower planted in an open area is ideal. If you’re planting indoors, you may consider placing a small fan nearby to give your flower proper ventilation.
  • Don’t plant flowers too close together. Again, this can wreak havoc on the number of nutrients your flowers can get. Aside from that, there is a higher chance of diseases forming and spreading rapidly.
  • Have a good fungicide on hand. There is nothing wrong with being prepared. If you have taken all other precautions but still see a bit of a mold issue, then you might want to consider having a good fungicide on hand for times of trouble. A quick spray is all you need to fight off the enemy. 

Following these precautions will ensure that there is less of a chance of any mold infecting your flowers. This will leave you with a colorful, beautiful garden that continues to look lovely throughout the entire year.


Seeing any mold on your flowers can be disturbing, but it doesn’t mean your flowers are destined for failure. By knowing the type of mold you are dealing with, you have a better shot at taking action and controlling the mold problem. The best thing to do is always to make sure that you are not overwatering your plant and that it is placed in a well-lit and well-ventilated area.

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