WiseAcre Gardens

north of the adirondacks – wildflowers & perennials that survive winters colder than my wife's feet

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Posted by WiseAcre on Mar 20th, 2009

Pixie Cup Lichens

Mar 20

Cladonia – possibly Cladonia chlorophaea

I want them to be Pixie Cups because the name is so cute but I can’t be sure. It may be too hard for me to identify Lichens but at least I can have fun photographing them.

Lichen - Cladonia

Until things start to bloom I’m ‘stuck’ taking macros of moss and lichens if I want to make new plant backgrounds for my desktop. That’s OK though, these things are pretty cool looking and I think they’d look pretty good on your computer too.

Cladonia - Lichen

So today it’s either lichens or ice. I’ve had enough cold stuff to last until July but just in case you haven’t – here’s the Ice. It too is available in a larger size (1024 x 768) suitable to use as desktop wallpaper.

Ice Shard Island

It might be the first day of Spring but there’s still a winter chill in both the air and water. Last night the temperature dropped to about 10 F and formed these ice shards in a small brook.

13 Responses

  1. Grammy Says:

    Those are way to awesome. Thanks for opening my eyes. I found fungus growing on the lower side of a tree in the swamp tour I took. in New Orleans. I would have never noticed if it were not for you waking me up to look closer. Thanks.
    Happy Spring to you!

    Happy Spring and Squinting to you too! Try to find secluded places to get down for those closer looks or people might come up to ya and ask if you’re OK.

  2. Monica Says:

    LOL, I’m visiting each of Ann Arbor’s 160+ parks this year and I just took a macro of some moss at one of them (post forthcoming)! No lichens, though, more’s the pity. I think they could be called horn of plenty or even bugle moss (after that gross but yummy snak with the same shape)!

    I’d like to fully explore the Adirondack Park but I should have started 40 years ago. I keep getting sidetracked by the ‘wild’ areas in my own ‘backyard’.

    I was thinking of Faerie-pipe organ as a description for these photos.

    Gross but yummy – worms gone gummy

  3. HoneyB Says:

    I love your photos. I need to get the energy to get up and out and take pics. Maybe while I’m on “recovery mode” and supposed to be out walking I should take my camera – I may get some good pics myself!

    I know you have the energy. Seeing how much you do makes me believe it’s Time you don’t have 🙂 Make sure you take those walks while on ‘recovery mode’. Don’t go and over do it though.

    Hey if you get hooked taking photos I’m not going to be held responsible if Grumpy goes hungry.

  4. sharkbytes Says:

    Are there other choices for a lichen that looks like that other than Pixie Cups? I’m quite a novice, but I thought that one was easy.

    There are other similar looking cups. At least they’re all in the same genus 🙂

    Cladonia chlorophaea – Mealy pixie-cup
    Cladonia deformis – Lesser sulphur-cup
    Cladonia gracilis – Smooth cladonia
    Cladonia fimbriata
    Cladonia coniocraea
    Cladonia multiformis

    These are the ones I’ve come across while attempting to ID the ones I photographed. I’m sure there are more.

  5. rainfield Says:

    I hid myself behind a tree today for a macro view on fungus. I thought I could find wonder but I was not an Acre Wiser, I saw fungus and again fungus, nothing more than that.

    Don’t stand still too long. I’m afraid you’d start growing moss and fungus in such a warm place.

  6. Kylee from Our Little Acre Says:

    You’ve inspired me to head to the woods in search of such things. We do have this strange green crispy stuff growing on our half-dead oak tree. I need to go do some macro photography!

    Outstanding! Love the “pixie cups” even if that isn’t what they are really. 🙂

    Check the stone ‘walls’ farmers have made along the crop fields if there are any in your area. I don’t know how rocky the ground is down there but up here by me if you take all the rocks out there’s nothing left 🙂

  7. cindee Says:

    Very pretty stuff(-: I think the Ice will come in handy about July!!!(-: I will be looking for some(-:

    Yea we’ll be wishing for wice once the heat and humidity sets in.

  8. Ratty Says:

    I like the way the lichen looks. I always imagine what it would be if they were taller than me.

    It would be like living in the land of the Pod People. Best to just imagine than move there 🙂

  9. Lisa Says:

    Similar landscape around here…we got 2″ snow night before last! Ah well, June is coming! 🙂 (I like lichens too, ID sure can be frustrating-like wild mushrooms!)

    I’ll be happy on April 1. Hard to believe but it will be 31 years of wedded foolishness 🙂

    Lichens, Moss and Mushroom – all make great photos but give me headaches trying to ID. I’m getting better with mushrooms – my 3 new field guides should help.

    Oh Yea, if interested you can see the shrooms I have identified on my website.

  10. kml Says:

    I have never seen these type before – they are beautiful – and the angle you took them at makes them look like a little forest.

    I believe their range is ‘everywhere’. These are growing in shade with just a bit of direct light in the summer. They’re also pretty small so you have to look for them.

    That was part visualizing the shot – part setting the camera down to keep it steady 🙂

  11. Ellen Says:

    I think those are Mealy Pixie Cups – certainly look like a match to those in my lichen field guide!


  12. Usman Haider Muhammadi Says:

    i think lichens will be the best to study for Landscape conservation. what will be scope of that study in the future.

  13. Phyl Moore Says:

    Hi. I am 62 yrs. I am writing a fantasy story for my little 4 yr old grand daughter which is set in a fantasy land composed of fungi lichens and mosses. I started off doing it for fun, but have now decided to try to get it published in UK. Please may I use your Pixie Cup image at the top of this page as part of the scenery? I shall be posting a list of credits for the images I use. I have bought some from istock but I really like your image.
    Thank You. Phyl Moore

    Yes. You may use any image you like. If it ever is published, send me a copy or let me know where I can get one