Dog Vomit Slime mold; looks as appealing as it sounds. Yellow-orange, slimy, oozy looking, patches were appearing and continue to do so throughout the gardens at the inn. The masses certainly raise questions and comments from those not familiar with it.
Commonly called dog-vomit fungus, these slimy masses are actually not a fungus, but a fungal like organism called a slime mold (Fuligo septic). They’re totally harmless to humans, pets, and plants. They’re just plasmodium that moves slowly in search of nutrients, similar to amoeba feeding on fungi and bacteria by engulfing it. There are spores everywhere just waiting for the right conditions to germinate, these masses seem to pop up overnight.
They’re most likely to occur in wet situations, perhaps in cases of high amounts of rainfall or where frequent watering takes place. They start out as a sticky yellow mass and then harden to a pinkish color, finally developing into a spore stage when millions of spores are disseminated by wind, rain, or curious humans stepping/poking at the masses.
Although they are quite an eyesore, they’re actually good for the garden, helping break down plant matter, which aids the microorganisms essential to the healthy growth of plants.
Those not familiar with could easily assume that someone or something threw up in the mulch, there’s not much to be done with them except to let time do its magic and wait until the masses harden and dry up.
Or you can try eating it! Fuligo septica is in fact edible. Native people in some parts of Mexico gather it and scramble it like eggs. I hear they call this dish “caca de luna,” moon poo, which is an even more entertaining name than dog vomit slime mold.
“Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it.”