Lichen. It’s LICHEN!

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This month, our nature study has been all about things that grow on other living things. At least that’s what I have been calling it, because you know what? I didn’t have a flippin CLUE what any of those green things growing on the tree were.

Something interesting is happening around here. When I set out with the grand plan to do a “Nature Study” with the kids, I really thought I would be teaching them something. After all, I’ve been on this earth a little while now. I’ve played outside. I’ve climbed trees and gone and walks. How hard could a nature study be?

Apparently, I don’t know a darn thing.

The more time we spend outside in nature, the more questions I have. This unit was supposed to be all about teaching the kids, but instead, I am gaining a valuable education.

When is the last time you really went outside and looked at something? I don’t mean go for a brisk walk- I mean get out there and really LOOK at something. Georgia O’Keefe said “When you take a flower in your hand and really look at it, it’s your world for the moment. I want to give that world to someone else. Most people in the city rush around so, they have no time to look at a flower. I want them to see it whether they want to or not.”

Georgia O’Keefe. Red Poppy.

We don’t take the time to really see nature around is. There is so much going on in those little quiet spaces if you take the time to look. The closer the kids and I look, the more blown away I am at the world of beauty and life around us.

I’ve never seen lichen before. I mean, I am sure I’ve seen it around, but I have never really SEEN it. Tree #1 from our study, the giant Tilia has at least 9 different unique types of lichen on it. 9. Tree #2, the Hawthorn, has teeny tiny mushrooms coming off of it, in a little crevice about 6 feet off the ground. Mushrooms, right there on the bark. They are so small I couldn’t get as clear of a picture as I wanted with the lens I have…. But if you could see them in person… I’m telling you, those little mushrooms would blow you away.

Our little corner of the world is full of exciting things to see, even if I don’t know the green stuff on the tree is called Lichen.

Someone send me a German nature guide in English. We need it.
Ok, fine… don’t send it to me. But really- do you know of one? Link me!

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One Comment

  1. I’ve heard it called “Lichen” before. Not that my random knowledge attributes to much! I think it’s an amazing thing that you are not only teaching your children, but also yourself. You are never too old to learn something new!

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