Look in the Right Place

On Thursday Jeanne and I were off to the grasslands. The place I choose was a barren. In this case one of the locations was a former gravel pit. However the pit is not quite the accurate term. It appeared they mostly just scraped the hilltop down about five feet.

The hairy silvery Rabbit’s Tobacco (Diaperia prolifera) and nostoc were abundant on the barren.
The dead head of Rabbit’s Tobacco is often used by Lark Sparrows in their nest construction.
Besides Rabbit’s Tobacco, tiny jelly lichens were found there too.

The damp Psora lichen sports green squamules. When dry the Psora lichens will range in colors from a frosty white to a reddish color.

In the past I really had never looked for Cymopterus (Vesper macrorhizus) here. Moreover I knew it must be here on this limestone barren. And sure enough it was here as expected!

A nice specimen developing its flowers!

So my choice of the location paid off. I found the Cymopterus (Vesper macrorhizus) just like I figured which was one of my goals. Yeah!

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Keep looking!

The more you know, the more you see and the more you see, the more you know


  1. Fantastic pics of Cymopterus (Vesper macrorhizus). Learning a lot of new, weird and wonderful words and life forms from your blog. The article about water scarcity hits home as our friends and family to the south confirm what they see and experience. We experienced a water issue near the border in October when an entire community was told their water supply, trucked in, was not safe to drink or use for washing; boiling, freezing, filtering etc would not help. As visitors, we had the luxury of leaving. It brought into sharp focus how utterly helpless (& relatively useless) we were in such an emergency. Appreciate the link!

    1. Alesha, that is so scary. It really is happening as your friends and family are experiencing it first hand. Thanks for sharing your story!

  2. Hooray for the 1st Cymopterus sighting! Spring is on the way! Very interesting info about lark sparrows and rabbit tobacco. I wonder if Diaperia has any pest repellant properties.

  3. Interesting thought about pest repellent. Claire (as a youngster) was studying the lark sparrows here at home. She was the one to make note of that part of their nest along with the grasses.

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