Help me identify some weird stuff growing on my lawn...
June 17, 2006 2:29 PM   Subscribe

Some weird stuff appeared on my lawn in the past few days. Is it a problem, and if so, how do I get rid of it? Link to a photo is included inside...

So, this stuff appeared on my lawn in the past week. I've never seen it before, and I'm not sure what it is. The best description I can manage is "little blobs attached to the blades of grass."

The "stuff" started off being yellow/orange, and has now turned to a blue/black colour. Small patches of it (about 6" across) are scattered around my back lawn, but don't appear anywhere on my front lawn.

A photo is included at this link: photo of stuff growing on my lawn (1.5MB JPEG).
posted by gwenzel to Home & Garden (12 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
they look like some form of insect eggs to me.
posted by Captain_Science at 2:34 PM on June 17, 2006

They may be grub (or beetle) eggs although they look a little big for that. The easiest thing would be to mow them over . . .
posted by jeremias at 2:37 PM on June 17, 2006

my guess is armyworms ... when they hatch ... which will be very soon, they will eat as much grass as they can ... they will eventually become moths after your lawn's eaten up

ask your local hardware store or garden place for something you can spray them with
posted by pyramid termite at 3:07 PM on June 17, 2006

So, they aren't pyramid termite eggs?
posted by The Bellman at 3:11 PM on June 17, 2006

It looks like slime mold. In particular, see this photo from here.

When it was orange, did it look sort of like gelatanous vomit?
posted by MonkeySaltedNuts at 3:14 PM on June 17, 2006

The photo of the slime mold sure looks like what I have. The stuff didn't look gelatinous when it was yellow - it looked pretty much the same way it does now, just with a brighter colour.

I've done some reading on slime molds, and it looks like that's what this stuff is, especially since it appeared The mold appeared after an extended rainy period, which we haven't had around here for several years.

Thanks everybody!
posted by gwenzel at 3:39 PM on June 17, 2006

According to The Chemical Free Lawn: "Control is easy. No chemicals are required. Instead , simply remove the mold spores from the grass by rinsing with water during dry weather, or mowing and raking at any time."
posted by caddis at 3:52 PM on June 17, 2006

Oh I forgot to say. Slime molds are not a problem. In your lawn they are probably eating thatch.

I treat them as pets. They coalsece into a moving body maybe twice a year and don't last long.
posted by MonkeySaltedNuts at 4:05 PM on June 17, 2006

I treat them as pets. They coalsece into a moving body maybe twice a year and don't last long.

I find this horrifying proof that God is toying with us.
posted by Bud Dickman at 8:15 PM on June 17, 2006 [1 favorite]

Physarum cinereum
During or after warm, wet weather or deep watering from late spring to autumn, the spores absorb water and crack open, and a motile swarm spore emerges from each. The amoebalike swarm spores feed on fungi, bacteria, other microorganisms, and decaying organic matter in the straw mulch while they undergo various changes and numerous fissions. Finally, they unite in pairs to form zygotes and become a shapeless, slimy plasmodium that increases in size. The plasmodium works its way to the soil surface and creeps over vegetation in round to irregular patches. Here the crustlike fruiting or reproductive state is formed, which is the only stage that most of us ever see.
posted by MonkeySaltedNuts at 9:39 PM on June 17, 2006

Ah, the fascinating slime mold... semiautomous gametes simultaneously behaving like microorganism predators and saprophytes, which only form full (genetic) organisms to engage in a massive sex act as a true collective organism. Rejoice in your slime molds, as MonkeySaltedNuts suggests they're probably doing good in their spawn state.
posted by nanojath at 10:55 PM on June 17, 2006 [1 favorite]

i have a friend who literally paid $20 to have a slime mold specimen shipped so he could keep it as a pet. don't kill it, its eating nasties.
posted by Tryptophan-5ht at 2:57 AM on June 18, 2006

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