Epiphytes:  Western PA Edward Frank
Sept 06, 2005


Sept. 06, 2005: Carl Harting and I visited Cook Forest today to measure trees, A trip report is forthcoming. After leaving Cook Forest we went to walk his property, and some adjacent areas, located a few miles west of Cook Forest. He owns 30 acres of ground, most of which were strip mined in the early 1950's. Of note to this thread were the epiphytes growing on the white pine on the property. Areas of property were still barren from the mining half a century ago, other areas were lightly covered by grass, and most areas have been reforested. The lower branches of white pine trees around the open area were covered by epiphytic lichens. Only one species of foliose lichen (sp? - I am not sure) seemed to be involved. The lichens also appeared to a lesser extent on hemlock branches in the same area. In areas that were more heavily wooded, lichens on the branches were virtually nonexistent. 

lichens_on_wpine.jpg (230698 bytes)
 Lichens onWhite Pine
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Lichens on White Pine - detail

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Lichen on Hemlock

A few species of lichens, including the same foliose species, were present as occasional growth on the bark of some trees and was present on dead trees and wood on the ground surface. The factor in their growth as epiphytes would seem to be the amount of light available to them. As was the case at Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, they grew preferentially on one tree species, in this case white pine.

[Note:  The lichen is possibly a Waxpaper Lichen - see this site for a photo and description:  http://www.ontariowildflower.com/moss.htm#waxpaper ]

Ed Frank 

"What you see depends mainly on what you look for." Richard J. Vogl