Monday, June 21, 2010

Slime Mold

When I went to the garden today, I found a very unpleasant-looking surprise. It looked as though something vomited in my squash bed. Strange thing is, I found the same thing last year.


This disgusting stuff was almost completely covering one poor little watermelon seedling (look closely in the center of the above photo). When I poked the stuff with a stick, it was soft & gooey and mustard-yellow in the center. Just gross.



I took these pictures planning to post a "what the heck" question but I decided to see if I could figure it out myself. Amazingly when I Googled "garden Colorado yellow slimy" I actually got useful results! After clicking a result titled "Yellow Goo in your Garden" from CSU's Extension office, I had a name to search. Slime Mold.

The next article from CSU (The Slime Molds) describes the mold as resembling dog vomit. I knew I had the right answer then! Actually, after reading the article, I'm almost wishing I hadn't poked it apart as much as I did (before I hosed it down pretty well to free the poor melon). It really is sort of interesting. I did have to laugh at the end of the article where it says "Like nature's other organisms, slime molds should be looked at for their beauty and enjoyed as one enjoys a mass planting of dianthus or snapdragons". I'm not so sure I'd go that far...

6 comments:

Toni said...

um... ew... did it say what to do about it?

We've had such a moist late Spring here... I found a huge mushroom in one of my beds! LOL... mushrooms in WYOMING!

Ribbit said...

You could harvest it and save it in baggies to lobb at unsuspecting rogue teenagers! If you're game, count me in.

Annie's Granny said...

I've had small amounts of that stuff in the garden, and it does look just like dog barf! I'd have blamed it on Otto or Annie, but they hadn't been in the garden. I poked mine, too ;-)

sb158 said...

Ew, that's just NASTY! You've been slimed!

Kris said...

Yuk. Mom nature on a bad day. I've had it occasionally. It's just amazing how fast it grows....

Amy said...

At least it seems to go away pretty quickly. I really can't believe that's actually something that wasn't regurgitated!

Ribbit, I'm game (now where are those teenagers...). Fortunately I haven't seen any rogue teens for about a year and those teens were playing hide & seek outside a vacant house across the street in the dark. When I yelled at them, they quietly apologized as they walked away. I felt like such a big meanie...