While there are so many types of mold and locations you might find it, we can break down how mold grows in order to better understand and prevent it. The life cycle of mold includes four main phases: hyphal growth, spore formation, spore dispersal, and spore germination. However, these phases are dependent on the environment. We can stop mold and spores in their tracks if we control moisture, temperature, and other factors.
The life cycle of mold begins when you feed it!
Mold begins as a cell, called hypha. Unfortunately, you cannot see it at this stage. Sometimes it will never be totally visible! But organic materials like wood are prime grounds for hyphal growth when exposed to moisture and warm temperatures. The hypha absorbs “nutrients” from the environment and grows into a mycelium. This results in a cluster of hyphae. Soon it is large enough to become visible.
Spores develop from all those tiny cells, and enter the air.
Spores form from this process. They are attached to the ends of the hyphae once the mycelium has arrived. They’ll drift into the air to find a new location where there’s water and more nutrients to thrive. While they can be “dormant” for a long time — these guys are robust! — proper dehumidification and remediation procedures can eliminate the spores in your home.
Unchecked spores? Mold is on the way!
Hyphae has settled in, mycelium has developed, and spores have formed and dispersed. Even in dry climates, those spores can survive. So you need to attack the problem at its roots: the hyphae. The clusters you can see, the mold. We can clean the air and remove spores, however, as this is the chief cause of allergies and human hazards.
In some cases, we have to eliminate the original “organic” breeding grounds as well. This is where mold remediation and mold removal cause homeowners trouble. If the problem has existed for some time, we may have to remove parts of walls or ceilings or other mold-friendly habitats. But we can break the life cycle of mold by getting to it where it started! And you’ll soon be safer and healthier for it.