Thursday, December 9, 2010

Honey check out the crusty trees!

My husband came home a couple weeks ago excited about some particularly lichen and moss covered trees he had discovered. He drew me a little map so I could be sure to locate them.
They are pretty spectacular!
And to think without proper warning I might have just passed them on by!
They reminded me I needed to take pictures of some of the fern covered trees around town.
The harsh white sky certainly isn’t helping the mood but the feel really is very “rain forest” I’m seriously tempted to try and plant a couple little ferns in the nooks of our Japanese snowbells. Is it harmful for the host tree?
This impressive clump of grass still looking good after all the rain and wind we’ve had!
What a waste of good tomatoes!
Interesting foliage patterns on this shrub (I think it’s a Buddleja?)…
And from the same neighborhood as the fern trees was this ivy sidewalk doorway…I wonder how many years they have been growing and training this ivy? Wait! What am I saying…its English Ivy…it probably took about 3 weeks!


  1. Wow... I LOVE those. And no, ferns, moss, etc don't harm the trees their sitting on. The tree is just a perch for them.

  2. Wait - where is the map that OM drew for you??!

  3. Love the miniature landscapes of moss and lichen.

  4. if you go down to the central library looking for Hinkley books, take a moment to look at the trees out front. I think they are Elm trees, and the branches are covered in ferns. They are spectacular.

  5. The neatest thing about that particular little native fern (licorice fern, Polypodium glycyrrhyza) is that it is summer-dormant - it springs to life with the first autumn rains and dies down as the summer heats up. Perfect for our climate! And that explains why we don't "notice" them in summer - they don't show up til Oct or Nov!

  6. On a related note, here's a link to a short video recently posted by NPR's Science Friday on lichens:

    I liked it. Maybe you'll like it too.

  7. loved the moss and the mood! thanks for helping me stop and take a closer look!

  8. Everytime I see a tree with ferns growing in it like that, I say out loud, "LOOK WHAT'S GROWING IN THAT CROTCH!" And yes, I am a 10 year old.

  9. Greensparrow, "a perch" I love that.

    D+N, the map, oh ya...well funny thing. It went in my pocket and then the jeans went in the laundry and that was the end of the map!

    Jenn, that's exactly how I've always thought of them!

    Ryan, if and when I get back downtown (ok who am I kidding, I haven't yet been to the new H&M! Gotta go!) I will definitely check those out.

    kate, thanks "sciency kate"! I always assumed I didn't notice them in the summer because I was too busy noticing the leaves. Winter = no leaves = I notice ferns.

    Jim, thanks for that! I did enjoy it and now I also have my favorite saying for the day "lichens are a lifestyle" oh ya!

    Janine, it's always good to stop and take a closer look.

  10. Gorgeous! Some of the lichens on our chaparral shrubs can get pretty amazing too, especially the ones that look like someone splattered acid green paint on the branches.


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