The growth patterns ofMycobacterium smegmatis SN2 in a minimal medium and in nutrient broth have been compared. The growth was monitored by absorbancy (Klett readings), colony forming units, wet weight and content of DNA, RNA and protein. During the early part of the growth cycle, the bacteria had higher wet weight and macromolecular content in nutrient broth than in minimal media. During the latter half of the growth cycle however, biosynthesis stopped much earlier in nutrient broth and the bacteria had a much lower content of macromolecules than in the minimal medium. In both the media, a general pattern of completing biosynthesis rapidly in the initial phase and a certain amount of cell division at a later time involving the distribution of preformed macromolecules was seen. The possible adaptive significance of this observation has been discussed.