This summer I had the honor of hosting a thriving colony of Fuligo septica. The hardwood mulch is ideal for growing it, and I have some 16 cubic yards of the stuff installed. So it was slime mold summer.
The pictured slime mold is a “young” one, still kind of soft and smooshy at this stage.
getting ready to make some spores!
Slime molds are awesome. They move. They go after chow, which for them means decaying stuff pretty much. The plasmodium is the name of the “fruiting” part, the big blobby messy thing that scoots around and devours bacteria and fungi and decaying goodies. They then get kind of crusty and fade from the vivid yellow that the youngster in my photo shows. Now you can call it an aethalium. If you disturb one or even squirt it with the hose, billions of spores come out, spreading the slime mold experience (if your lucky, to your neighbor’s place too!).
Slime molds are not harmful in any way. And you can’t get rid of them no matter how bad you want to. So embrace the awesomeness of slime molds. Hug a slime mold today.
(I can’t believe I don’t have any good aethalium pics. We had dozens of the things all summer long.)