Micro Moldenomics – The Spore

Black mold, known as starchybotrys chartarum in the scientific community, is a more well-known species of mold due to its toxicity and its ability to grow in buildings, homes or offices where humidity or moisture is present.  Black mold, like other molds, contains tiny spores that help it to grow, develop and spread.  Black mold typically appears greenish-black in color, and it gets its slimy look and feel from a slimy, gelatinous material (eeeewwwww!!!) which binds the spores together.  If mold loses its source of moisture, then the gelatinous material dries out and POOF!  It turns to dust. The clusters of spores suspended in that ooey gooey binding agent generally grow at the end of stem-like structures of the mold colony known as hyphae.  The spore, while typically a darker color, can also be gray as well.  Smell anything musty, stale, or mothball-like?  First, make sure you put on deodorant this morning.  If you have and the odor persists, what you could be smelling is mold growing in your home.

mold-sporesBlack mold, like most of other molds, is usually spread through its tiny spores.  There are lots of ways that spores can spread.  Think of a warm summer day, you pick a dandelion from the grass, and blow lightly against it.  The seeds of the dandelion are carried off in the air, floating until they land on something.  That “something” that the dandelion seed lands on can be something moving as well, like the back of a dog, that then carries the tiny mold spores even further.  Within seconds, the dandelion seeds can be carried far away in all directions.

Now imagine that the dandelion is a seething, teething, rootin’, tootin’ growth of black mold.  Instead of blowing dandelion seeds into the wind, you are now blowing small mold spores.  The spores, acting just like the dandelion seeds, float through the air and can land on anything.  Can these spore intruders travel into your home this way?  Absolutely.  Did you leave the bedroom window open?  INTRUDER ALERT!  Was Fido with you on your walk and is running back into the house as we speak with spores that have landed on his back?  INTRUDER ALERT!! Did you just want into your home and lay your spore-carrying coat on the couch?  INTRUDER ALERT!!!  The various ways that mold spores may travel into your home are endless.  Don’t forget that once the spore gets inside, it can easily be transported to other rooms in the house via people, animals, shoes, and even heating and air-conditioning air ducts.  And remember, mold loves moisture!  If you don’t leave a loving, caring and habitable (read “wet”) environment for your mold spore to thrive and prosper, then you can avoid that mold problem in the first place.  And don’t forget that mold also loves those materials that are high in cellulose content.  YUM YUM YUM!!!


So, to wrap things up, remember that black mold spores are capable of spreading themselves by way of a host of different carriers.  Black mold can spread easily and quickly, so at the first signs of mold, it is always the safest best to call a professional to remove it for you.  Always do your best to minimize contact with mold and dry out any wet areas as soon as they become damp.