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  • Writer's pictureEnid Gonzalez-Orta

All Culture Media: The Good, The Bad, and The Smelly by Yara K.

Student standing holding pipet
Yara consults with his lab partner about procedures in lab.

For a microbiologist, the most common form of visualization for their results is through some sort of media. Whether it be solid or liquid media, microbiologists rely on these two broad types of media to visualize the microscopic colonies at the field's core. Solid media includes many media types, including selective, composition, safekeeping, and many others (Types of media in microbiology 2023). In the solid media category, among the several types commonly available, the one that was offered to us through this course that I had never seen before was All Culture media. Of course, as the name implies that it has everything I was looking for I chose that as the media I would use for the semester. Little did I know that picking this media I had never used before would be so interesting in so many ways, in positive ways and negative ways.

All Culture media is often selected for use as it offers the ability to grow more types of

microorganisms than other mediums (Biotrend, 2023). That being said, let’s look at the positive side of All Culture media first. The main positive of using All Culture media is that it grows colonies faster than most other mediums. While most of the class incubated their plates for 48 hours, most of the All Culture media users only had to incubate their plates for 24 hours. This would mean, if needed, one could produce plates at a faster rate if needed. The main negative of using this media is if incubated for the standard 48 hours the colonies are susceptible to overgrowing and growing into one another. This could ruin potential library plates and/or streak plates. The most unique part of this media is the smell. It goes from smelling like a normal plate before incubation to a stench that covers an entire desktop after incubation. The best way to describe the smell is like the plate went from smelling like a fresh bag of McDonald’s fries to smelling like that bag was left underneath the seat of your car for a week. That being said, just like every other media, All Culture has pros and cons. In summary, All Culture media is great to use if monitored daily, and an optional nose plug is recommended.

Biotrend. (n.d.). Biotrend > Biotrend. Retrieved March 15, 2023, from



Types of media in microbiology. (n.d.). Retrieved March 15, 2023, from



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