The Slime Mould Collective

An international network of/for intelligent organisms

If you're keen to grow your own the slime mould Physarum Polycephalum, this information may help...

Preferred conditions: dark and damp (for example: petri dishes or tupperware in a shoe box or similar, with a damp base - paper towels or agar base).
Food likes: favourite food is porridge oats, doesn't mind starchy stuff like rice and pasta. Best to give sterilised (i.e. boiled) food, so it doesn't go mouldy as quickly. I often boil flaked oats to make a paste and keep it in the fridge.
The slime mould itself is harmless, but the food you give it will go mouldy (just usual food mould) so some care is needed, and your pet physarum slime mould should move to a new clean environment on a weekly basis.
Its top speed is approximately one centimetre an hour, so not exactly a spectator sport, but its beautiful growth patterns are clearly visible and easily captured with time lapse photography. My films are shot at various frame rates, from one shot every 20 seconds to one every 5 minutes, depending on what I want to show.
If you want to capture protoplasmic streaming (the inner pulse of Physarum polycephalum which transmits nutrients and chemical signals) chose a frame rate of less than 90 seconds as that is the approximate duration of the pulse in each direction.
Happy growing… do share your results...

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A Simple Method of Growing the Plasmodial Slime Mold

as recommended by a slimoco member

I put a guide with pictures up here also

My cultures keep getting invaded by actual molds-- despite the methods we have employed to try to keep them out.  Is there a discussion thread on these issues or a FAQ?


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