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Botany Photo of the Day
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Rhizocarpon geographicum

Rhizocarpon geographicum

Yellow map or world map lichen is frequently used in lichenometry, a geobotanical technique employed to estimate the age of exposure of a rock surface. Since Rhizocarpon geographicum quickly colonizes newly-exposed rock surfaces and has a known rate of growth, geologists can, for example, examine glacially-deposited rocks and determine the rate of glacial retreat. For an excellent introduction to lichenometry, read Lichens, Lichenometry and Global Warming (PDF), a short and well-illustrated paper by Richard Aston in the September 2004 issue of “Microbiologist”.

Photography resource link: Photographer and writer Freeman Patterson. To see a sampling of his photographs, click on Prints. Use the small vertical grey bars to access different albums of his images.

3 Comments

Thanks for the intoduction to so many new plants. It is a marvelous world we line in.

Patricia, it is indeed. I forgot to mention the scale of this photograph - it's roughly 5cm top to bottom.

Wonderful... My first blog browsing and I find a lichen photo! Good job Daniel, thanks!

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