7 responses to “Cladonia bellidiflora”

  1. Denis

    ‘Toy Soldier’?
    I know it’s a bit long, but I find Cladonia bellidiflora ‘Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer Moss’ too irresistible to pass up. But, I guess the cute route only works for the horticulture trade.

  2. Helen Pressley

    I think it looks a bit like too bright lipstick!

  3. Alice

    Is this the same one that also goes by the moniker ‘British Soldiers’?

  4. michael aman

    My grandparents called it ‘British soldiers’ too. Perhaps they were the last generation to feel a visceral reaction to occupying British soldiers. Today’s teenagers wouldn’t have a clue what we were referring to.

  5. Keith Nevison

    The squamules of Snoqualmie Pass. Hard to forget that!

  6. Tamara Bonnemaison

    Yes, this species is also known as ‘British soldiers’. As for ‘lipstick lichen’, a closely-related species, Cladonia macilenta, already goes by that moniker. I don’t know of any species that go by the name ‘Rudolph’, but given that Cladonia is a staple food of reindeer, it might be an apt fit.

  7. Richard Droker

    I think fertile lichen mycobionts would not be investing so much of their resources in sexual reproduction if it were not effective. One way this might be achieved is by belonging to guilds, as discussed by Rikkinen et al., 2002 – Lichen Guilds Share Related Cyanobacterial Symbionts, Science 19 July 2002: 357 (see illustration at ‎www.helsinki.fi/biosciences/plantbiology/Rikkinen1.pdf):
    The dispersal ecology of cyanolichen guilds may center around “core species,” such as N. parile and P. triptophylla, that produce massive amounts of symbiotic diaspores. “Fringe species,” such as N. bellum and N. resupinatum, produce only fungal spores and may largely depend on the core species for the dispersal of appropriate cyanobionts. Only a small proportion of symbiotic propagules can develop into mature lichen thalli. Many diaspores land on suboptimal substrates, eventually disintegrate, and release their cyanobionts. These cyanobionts may be salvaged by the mycobionts of fringe species. Core species may also benefit from this activity, as their cyanobionts are deposited into other guild members rather than being completely lost. Some of the cyanobionts can potentially be reclaimed because, without the ability to produce symbiotic diaspores, fringe species cannot “grab the cyanobionts and run.” These phenomena may help to explain why the existence of competition is often difficult to demonstrate in lichen communities (5).

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