I abandoned my "no summer planting rule" this year. Working in the garden is just about the only thing that's kept me sane during this pandemic. But, as foolish as planting is when it's hot and dry as dust, I'm not going to give up anything I plant without a fight so I've been doing more watering than usual this summer, trying to give my new plants a halfway decent chance of survival. Last month, I dug up several ungainly-looking rosemary shrubs and, unable to leave the space empty until fall, I planted Zinnias as a temporary filler (along with another Abelia 'Kaleidoscope') and I've been hand-watering the area regularly. Zinnias can take the heat but they need regular watering, especially when they aren't deeply rooted. Monday afternoon, I went to check on them to see if more watering was required. And I saw this:
|I immediately recoiled|
After my initial shock, it only took me a minute to realize what this was. I'd seen it once before and, once seen, it's hard to forget. It's Fuligo septica, more commonly known as dog vomit fungus, dog vomit slime mold or scrambled egg slime. I'd added compost and planting mix to the bed after I pulled out the rosemary shrubs and, after regular applications of water to keep the new Zinnias and Abelia hydrated, I got slimed. (I enjoy a good Ghostbusters reference and this one seems appropriate.)
I haven't cleaned up the slime yet. I expect the return of temperatures near or above 100F this weekend will cause it to break down but, if it doesn't, I'll scrape it up.
|This reflects how I feel after the morning news most days now|
I apologize if this is an unappetizing post. I promise that my next post will be a whole lot prettier. In the meantime, for more Wednesday Vignettes, visit Anna at Flutter & Hum.
All material © 2012-2020 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party