Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

More lichen

with 28 comments

Greenish Lichen by Flameleaf Sumac 6675

Click for greater clarity.

When I was at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center on the overcast and still damp morning of December 6th, I photographed this lichen on a dead branch. The contrasting background is due to that stalwart of fall color, flameleaf sumac, Rhus lanceolata.

© 2104 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

February 8, 2014 at 6:02 AM

28 Responses

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  1. Well, now. That explains my itch! 😉 Beautiful background as well, Steven!

    Uncle Tree

    February 8, 2014 at 6:08 AM

    • A branch of a tree for an Uncle Tree: now that’s a first for me.
      I’d taken my share of lichen pictures, but probably none with as colorful a background, which is what made this view stand out for me.

      Steve Schwartzman

      February 8, 2014 at 7:03 AM

  2. the texture and the colors! like a mosaic!

    Talking Trees Gallery

    February 8, 2014 at 6:10 AM

    • I’d thought about the texture and colors, but not about a mosaic. I’m glad you see that here.

      Steve Schwartzman

      February 8, 2014 at 7:15 AM

  3. Lichens are such amazing organisms, combining for the betterment of both fungus and alga,

    Steve Gingold

    February 8, 2014 at 6:44 AM

  4. Lovely lichen and how obliging of the flameleaf sumac to provide such a beautiful background.


    February 8, 2014 at 6:58 AM

  5. I found some fungi growing on an old plastic bowl….I forgot to take a picture but I was struck by the fact that something would grow on such an inhospitable material.


    February 8, 2014 at 8:30 AM

  6. Beautiful! There is sooo very much lichen up here in the Blue Ridge Mtns. I recall being told as a child that a cleaner environment will have more lichen. Maybe so. I am 100 miles from the pollution of Washington DC. I thought I would take on the task of getting to know more about lichens! OMG! What a complicated world! I think it would be way easier to get to know the world of ferns, which too, is very foreign to me! Keep those pictures comin’ Steve!


    February 8, 2014 at 1:00 PM

    • It’s great that you have a world of lichens at hand, Brenda, and for your sake I hope that’s a consequence of clean air in your area. Like you, I find lichens and ferns to be complicated. I know little about them, but they’ve offered me some good opportunities for photographs, and that’s my main concern.

      Steve Schwartzman

      February 8, 2014 at 7:24 PM

  7. The complementary colors are beautiful, can’t wait to visit the Wildflower Center again!

    Bonnie Michelle

    February 8, 2014 at 2:35 PM

    • They’ve finished some new sections since you were there, so you’ll have even more to see than before. Let’s hope you can visit at the peak of the spring wildflower season.

      Steve Schwartzman

      February 8, 2014 at 7:26 PM

  8. This is very appealing, and it must be the green with the orange and the shape of the branch. I’ve yet to learn more about pioneering species, but now I’m so involved with tropicals that my wildflower project will have to wait. Too many flowers blooming around me now, and most are far from being native, but then, how can one define ‘native’ on such small island? There are ‘endemic’ species here, but the non-native are far more numerous.

  9. Great texture and color in this one, Steve. I LOVE lichen and I’m always glad to see it in my garden and in the woods. It’s supposed to thrive in low pollution air.


    February 8, 2014 at 10:34 PM

    • I was thinking about you just a day or two ago, Lynn, and here you are. Your comment about loving lichen made me realize that I don’t think I’ve ever heard of anyone claiming not to like lichen. You’re the second commenter to mention the supposed association between lichen and low pollution; if that’s true, there must be a scarcity of lichen in Shanghai.

      Steve Schwartzman

      February 9, 2014 at 4:06 AM

  10. I’m likin’ your lichen!


    February 8, 2014 at 10:42 PM

  11. Amazing detail


    February 9, 2014 at 4:40 PM

  12. Wonderful gritty, grainey textures. I always find lichen so interesting to study and observe. A great shot!

    Mary Mageau

    February 10, 2014 at 1:12 AM

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