Friday, April 25, 2014

Moss and Lichen Watching at Interstate State Park

From a recent family trip to Interstate State Park (both the Minnesota and Wisconsin side).

Rock Jasmine - Androsace occidentalis

I'm starting my "Moss and Lichen Watching . . ." post with something that is neither, it's a flowering plant.  But it's so tiny and I found it while poking around the rocks and such looking for moss and lichen photo opportunities.  They have a Hen-and-Chicks look to them, at this stage, before their tiny white flowers open.  It was somewhat of a challenge to identify, mainly because many wildflower guides don't mention it; I think the comment on the Minnesota Wildflower page best sums up this plant  ". . . and is only of interest to those who celebrate the diversity of nature".

Assorted Mosses

The ferns in this picture were often growing along with the mosses and lichens on and around the rocks at Interstate.
An eye pleasing arrangement of different moss species
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I think the brown streaks in the above picture are little moss plants starting to grow over the lichen.

Rock-shield Lichen - Xanthoparmelia sp.

Rock-posy Lichen - Rhizoplaca sp

Leather Lichen - Dermatocarpon sp

The dark brown lichens.

Crustose Lichens

The one in the picture above is my favorite.  Maybe a species of Tile Lichen (Lecidea)
Maybe a species of Dust Lichen (Lepraria).  Crustose lichens to offer a lot of id features to the casual observer!