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xanthoria lichen

Ear Fungus

Monday 18th March 2002, West Yorkshire

ear fungusear fungiAn old elder bush in a front garden lost a limb during recent winds. It's now looking the worse for wear and it has sprouted a dozen or more growths of ear fungus, which are looking fresh and glossy thanks to the wet weather.

parmelia, a grey lichen On my short walk along our suburban street to the post box there's plenty of new growth to see, not just the bulbs and blossom appearing in the garden but new life on a smaller scale too. Yellow, pale green and bright green lichens encrust the tops and shady sides of walls.cushion moss on wall The drearily cool damp weather has outstayed its welcome but at least it has encouraged the growth of a cushion moss on the coping stone on a garden wall. It is bristling with tiny red sporangia, the fruiting bodies of the moss.

moss on wall By the post box on an old north-facing wall a feathery bright green moss cascades down the stone work turning a small corner of West Yorkshire into something reminiscent of the moss-covered stones you might see in a wild oak wood on rain-lashed Dartmoor.

feathery moss from lawn Large patches of our front lawn now consist more of dense springy moss than grass. When the drier weather comes, as it hopefully will before too long, I'll rake it out as it dies back.

It's spring-cleaning time for the house sparrows that are nesting at the corner of our house. They've turfed out some of the old debris from previous page

Richard Bell
Richard Bell,
wildlife illustrator

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