Monday, June 6, 2011

Gardening = Terror?

Saturday, I took a break from studying and spent some time in the garden. I mucked out the pond (and found teenie tiny baby goldfish!!!) and planted some flower seeds. At one point I was digging around the base of a tree with a hand trowel, wanting to make a space for some shade flowers. I'm stabbing away at the dirt and, suddenly, this THING popped out of the ground like it was on a damned spring and almost splatted into my chest. Thankfully I have ninja-like reflexes developed from a lifetime of being highly anxious and tweaky, so I was able to throw myself back while shouting like an idiot.

This horrible ball of slime is what sprang out at me:

It was the exact size of a chicken egg, covered in 1/2 inch thick layer of slime, and smelled terrible. I thought I had dug up an alien baby. I was not happy that my serene garden contained such horrors. I knew Dani wouldn't believe me if I simply described it to her, so I scooped it up on my trowel and carried it into the house. She was taking a nap, but this was too important for sleep! Her reaction was: what the crap is that? Is it alive? How about you put that outside? 

I plopped it onto the front porch and, in the interest of science, I cut it open. That little bastard was as hard as a rock. It also released a hideous stench once it was sliced into. It took being putrid very seriously.

I have no idea what the crap this thing is, which means I need to hit the internet. I'm guessing if it truly is not an alien baby that is about to sprout tentacles at me, then it is probably a fungus of some kind. I get on Google images and type in the most unfortunate series of words, bringing up pictures I should have never seen, wish I could erase from my brain, and will probably alter my psyche forever. Things like mucus, eggs, slime, gross, fungus, etc. It was a bad idea.

Finally, I discover that my unholy friend is a stinkhorn "egg" or fruiting body. How interesting is that? It's deliberately nasty to attract flies, and the adult stinkhorn looks disturbingly like a phallus with some kind of terrifying STD. 

Of course I had to show the girls. They were delighted and yelled, "GROOOOOSS!" and poked it with sticks. Then I put it in a bowl on the porch and forgot about it until today. I went to dump it out and saw that it has grown. AHHH! It's still alive! It's trying to reach for me! And it's slimier! I don't like nature anymore!


  1. Thank you so much for posting this. I've been seriously freaked out by the alien like substance in my yard.

  2. I'm glad my terrifying experience could help someone out! I thought I was hallucinating when that exploded out of the dirt at me.