What are these fungus/lichen, and how do I grow more?

Edymnion(7a)July 6, 2011

Hello all, I just decided to get into bonsai (well, bonchi technically, but close enough), and since I have a couple dozen acres of forest out here in the boonies, I went on a harvesting expedition to get some interesting moss and whatever else I could find that would look good decorating the base.

Along with the normal every day run of the mill moss, I found a couple of what I presume are fungi or lichens that I don't know the name of. They are very visually interesting though, and I'd like to use them in my display (when its ready).

Both were found growing on old deadwood (which I made sure to pry the bark and wood off with) well off the beaten path where they would most likely be in shade all day long.

Question is, what are they (so I can do some research on my own), and if anyone knows, how do I grow more of them? The pepper plants I plan on using for my bonchi won't be big enough for months yet, and I rather doubt these will live that long. Maybe I'm wrong, but I'd rather not just glue dead lichens to a rock if I can find out how to put something on there that will let them grow and thrive. The moss I know I can just grind up with some buttermilk and spread wherever I want, its the other two that have me stumped.

Right now I've got samples of all three in some damp coco coir I had left over from sprouting the peppers in, which I'm hoping will be close enough for them, for now at least.

(Now watch the first one be something like "Corpse grass, only grows on the skulls of murdered teenagers" and the second one being "Trumpet fungus, grows at a rate of 1 millimeter every 10 years" or some equally horrible thing.)

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Both are common lichens and indeed very decorative. The one to the left must be some kind of Beard Lichen (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Usnea) while the one to the right must be some kind of Cup licen (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cladonia).

About growing them I don't really know. Probably it is possible to collect specimens with the wood they grow on and keep that ind an atmosphere akin to where they were found. But that won't give you a lot of lichen as slow indeed is very slow - some mm/year. Simply gooling "growing lichen" gives some interesting hits though.

/Hans Olav

    Bookmark   July 10, 2011 at 5:20PM
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Oh goody, milimeters per year. Okay, if/when I use them for decorations, I'll just glue dead ones on there and call it a day, thanks. =)

    Bookmark   July 11, 2011 at 4:08PM
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