Artillery Fungus / Shotgun Mold

What is Artillery Fungus?

Artillery fungus is a fascinating fungus when you research it. These fungi can attach itself to any surface because of its sticky spores and coating. In essence, this fungus formulates on moist surfaces, in water puddles and enhances with extreme weather conditions. The fungus formulates sac-like pods which act as a home to the periodoles inside the liquid. When the pod bursts, these periodoles get cannoned into the air and can reach as far as six feet – attaching to any surface it grazes against almost instantly. Once a periodole lands, it is capable of immediately reproducing cells and spreading across the surface it lands on.

As you can imagine, artillery fungus can spread rather quickly on the surface of your home or personal belongings. Since this fungus feeds off bright light and water, white surfaces are more susceptible to having artillery fungus formulate on them. Statistics show that white vinyl siding on homes and white vehicles have more reported cases of the fungus breakout than normal. However, this is just a preference, artillery fungus can and will formulate wherever their periodoles land! Once you allow this fungus to spread, it can be quite a headache to get rid of, especially on something as delicate as the paint job on your car! Since this is a strong, sticky fungus, the use of chemical products have been more successful  and preferred amongst consumers. However, most of these chemicals are safe for the vinyl siding and other materials commonly used on your home, but not for vehicles or PVC fences.

Many people have had success with thoroughly and consistently washing their car with steaming hot water and fragrance free soap to remove artillery fungus or prevent them from formulating. In order to succeed with this method, however, it is imperative to thoroughly dry the vehicle exterior and the undercarriage pristinely. This can help you avoid having water trapped in a blind spot – setting yourself up for a future break out of artillery fungus. Using a water proof wax coat on your car can also help you avoid artillery fungus from growing. If the water does not remain on the car you are less likely to have to deal with removing artillery fungus or any bacteria for that matter. However, if you do find that the problem persists and worsens, you may have to take it to the professionals to access the damage.

I didn’t write this article, but I’ll just let you know our dealings with artillery fungus.  It comes from mulch.  If you have old mulch around your home you are sure to have artillery fungus.  The only way I’ve been able to remove it so far is shortly after it is shot on your home.  It will shoot a black round dot on your home.  It can shoot 40 feet.  If you peel it off, it will leave a tar-like dot behind.  I have had no success in removing it.  There is a new product out claiming to be able to remove it.  I have ordered some and will test it out this spring.  If you have any questions, feel free to call us at 216-323-0552.  For more information check out our main pressure washing / power washing web page.