Lichens all About Me

It informs me so I do it. I can’t help it and I do it countless times a day each and every day come rain or sun. It’s the walking around my garden, orange orchard, wooded area and the complete perimeter of my land. I find it an area so pure, relaxing and wondrous. I’m a hopeless case totally in love with my paradise here in Portugal. 

I am not a gardener, far from it. I’m more of a killer of plants at this time due to my lack of knowledge. But there is some good, most survive my tender loving hands. I inspect almost everything each and everyday, and I try so hard to determine what is growing. Even so, there is so much to miss for the untrained eye and less than knowledgeable person.

Everything that grows tells a story as does how it grows. For me, there are many mysteries as to what’s happening and why. When I first bought my property, I was delighted with the hundreds upon hundreds of oranges that were here, and soon came the first question. Why were so many splitting. I understand why now so a little knowledge is gained. I have many stone fruits including peaches, nectarines and apricots. This year, those trees suffered from a leaf curl problems. I did not understand at first what caused the problem, but do now. My lateness in identification has destroyed much of this years crop. Next year, I shall be prepared.

I’m not sure what I like most on my land, but the olive trees rank high. I have forty-two or so olive trees that had been neglected for years. They provided the olives last year, but the actual trees, were in a sorry state appearance wise. I am working on them with tenderness and love. It is time consuming but a joyous activity that after a couple of years or so, will hopefully result in the beautification of these majestic vibrant trees. One tree in particular I have named. I have named it hobby tree. It is a tree I shall provide with the greatest attention and experiment the art of topiary.

Lichens all around my garden prompted this post. When walking around the garden I can note the variation in scent between one part and another and it is clear, the air is extremely pure and devoid of atmospheric pollutants as in city living. Today, and not for the first time, I inspected what was growing on many tree trunks. But today was a little different as I inspected them far more closely than before.

There has been much rain here as of late and the humidity level reads at near on 92 this morning. This has resulted in many lichens growing vigorously so I investigated further. There is usnea subfloridana, parmelia perlata, degelia plumbea and ramalina fraxinea lichens growing in an abundantly. Initially, perhaps these lichens look unsightly to the more clinically sterile minded person seeking a formal appearance. I’m not that way inclined and for me, there is a beauty upon close inspection into these delicate intricate structures. But like so often, they are an indication of something else. They say the air is pure, and so they are a welcome addition to my paradise.

The following images may not appeal to everyone but I ask viewers, take a moment and look closely at what you see. Study them for a moment longer than usual. It is an abundance of life on a single olive tree trunk from top to bottom. To me, both I find to be really beautiful. It is almost like looking at a coral reel. For me, there is almost something magical in what grows and the creations of mother nature.

A Sign of Purity in the Air