Dry rot life cycle

The four stages of dry rot

Dry Rot Lifecycle

Dry rot is a living growing fungus which feeds off of and destroys timber in order to survive. Dry rot needs moisture to grow and can spread very quickly given enough humidity.

There are four main stages in the dry rot life cycle:

(click on the images above to see hi-res versions)
1. Spore:

Dry rot begins as a tiny spore. On their own these spores are practically invisible to the naked eye but in large quantities dry rot spores appear as a fine orange/brown dust. Dry rot spores can be found in most properties and will remain harmless unless combined with timber and excess moisture.


Where timber and moisture are present the spore will begin to grow. The spore produces very fine white strands, not unlike cobwebs, known as hyphae. These strands allow the dry rot fungus to grow by infiltrating the timber and feeding on it. It is through this process that dry rot breaks the structure of the timber down thus removing its strength. If dry rot signs can be spotted at the hyphae stage there is a good chance of containing it  before it spreads any further.

3. Mycelium:

When hyphae runs out of timber to feed on it begins to grow into a large cotton wool like mass known as mycelium. Mycelium can spread a considerable distance in search of new timber and it is this ability to exponentially grow, over a  variety of materials, which allows an outbreak to progressively destroy the structural timbers of an entire building if left undetected.

4. Fruiting Body:

In suitable conditions, dry rot mycelium will continue to exist and grow at a considerable rate within a building. Fungi prefers dark and damp areas with little or no breeze. When conditions change the dry rots survival is threatened and its natural response is to create a sporophore or "fruiting body". The funtion of this mushroom-like form is to pump spores into the atmosphere that land on other susceptible areas in the building where dry rot grwoth can continue. This process allows the dry rot life cycle to start all over again. 

Dry rot treatment can take place at any of the four stages above.

suspect Dry Rot in you property?

Dry Rot is an increadibly serious timber condition that can have a major impact on your properties structural integrity. If you have noticed any of the signs above it is importnant that you get a professional in to survey your property and provide a dry rot treatment plan.

Dry rot treatment

Wise Property Care are the leading dry rot experts in Scotland. If you suspect their is a dry rot problem in your property then we can create the perfect treatment programme for you.

Dry rot treatment

Dry rot survey

Our qualified and experienced surveyors can evaluate any dry rot problem and create an ideal treatment programme. Make the right choice for your property and book a survey with Wise.

Book a dry rot survey

Contact Wise Property Care for dry rot advice

If you want to speak to someone regarding a dry rot issue, contact Wise Property Care today or use our online contact form and we will organise a one of our dry rot experts to call and speak to you at a time convienant for yourself.