Yesterday’s finds were great. The orchids were the highlight of the day’s adventure, but certainly not all. The following are some of the other highlights.

It just blows me away that the remains of these creatures lived some 145-100 millions years ago and that most all of our area was under the sea. Mussels and clams were abundant. The spiral shaped one may be Mesalia (Turritella) seroato-granulata.

Rocks are so cool. The tube shape could be a tunnel for some creature. I am certain there is a technical name for it, but my rock hunting days were awhile back. Yep, it is mind blowing!
Someone should tell the Ambush bug (Phymata genus) that he is not very camouflaged on the purple.

Crab spider

A stink bug (Pentatomidae) nymph. The Eryngo (Eryngium leavenworthii) is great place to look for a variety of insects.

The Prairie Gaillardia (Gaillardia aestivalis) continues to bloom.

Prairie Gaillardia’s (Gaillardia aestivalis) seed head is just as pretty as the flower.

Rusty Blackhaw (Viburnum rufidulum) had lost all its leaves, but the drupes were so beautiful.


The Prickly Pear’s (Opuntia) fruit or tuna as it is called, was another stand out.

We cut open the tuna to give it a taste. I had actually never tried it before except in a jelly that I had gotten from a store. It sorta had a watermelon flavor to me.
Live Oak’s (Quercus fusiformis) acorns were this beautiful chestnut color.

The inside of the acorn’s cap

The outside of the cap
White Honeysuckle berries (Lonicera albiflora) were arranged like petals on a flower.

One more arrangement of the berries.
The American Beautyberry (Callicarpa americana) can be made into a jelly. One of my prairie friends said he had tasted the jelly  and it was good. In Carol Clark‘s talk yesterday on historical uses of Texas plants, she also mentioned it. Carol has very informative blog and her latest post is about the books she referenced in her talk.

The plants were loaded!
The bracts remains after the flower has fallen on this doveweed (Croton).

Texas Sleepy Daisy (Xanthisma texanum var dummondii) seed head with anthers still clinging on.

Harvestman (Leiobunum vittatum) was hidden pretty well on the Live Oak (Quercus virginiana).

Orange polypore shelf fungus

Crustose lichen found on limestone.

The above lichen was UV positive. Hopefully I can do the chemical tests and look at the spores tomorrow.

Keep looking!

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