The Q&A Archives: Yellow "foam" On Soil

Question: I have bright yellow "stuff" forming on top of the soil in my flower beds. The bright yellow stuff looks grainy, then swells up and looks like spray foam insulation, then turns brown and powdery. It blows away in the wind and scatters when water hits it. Do you know what this is and what I should do about it? It does not seem to harm my plants, but looks horrible.

Answer: Welcome to the wonderful world of slime molds! These goopy fungi (Myxomycetes) live on dead organic matter and thrive in moist conditions. You can rake it out and dump it in the trash; especially in the early stages before it spreads its spores. Increasing the air circulation and allowing the soil to dry out will help eliminate the stuff. To help stop the growth of slime mold, just rake any mulch on the soil surface to expose it to air and sunlight. It's perfectly harmless - just revolting to look at!

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