Fun Facts About Fungi

Spores


    SPORE 

Slime molds, like fungi, use spores to survive and spread to new sources of food. Spores are not seeds. The hard shell of a seed contains the very small beginning form of its plant, plus some food to help the little plant get started. A seed is made of many cells, and a single seed is visible to our eyes.

Most spores are single cells protected by a cell wall. Some spores are made of several cells, but the largest spore is still smaller than the smallest seed (made by orchids). A single spore is too small to be visible to our eyes.

There is no microscopic slime mold inside a spore. A spore contains all the chemicals needed to make its kind of organism. When conditions are right, the spore starts to grow and creates a new plasmodium, the slime mold individual.


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Last update: 12 Dec 2001. Preparation of this page by Robert Fogel (rfogel@umich.edu) supported in part by National Science Foundation Grant 9400871.