Observation 99040: Platismatia wheeleri
When: 2012-05-16
(47.4299° 117.5267° 707m)
No herbarium specimen

Notes: Substrate: basalt rock.

Notes: There’s two things interesting about this specimen.

Firstly, it was growing on the north side of a basalt rock which is a rare to uncommon substrate for this species.

Secondly, there are soredia that have taken hold with lovely black rhizomorphs. Only one photo was able to come out properly, but these are scattered over the thallus, and the probable source is shown in the last photograph, a Lepraria like species. Those black rhizomorphs… wow.


The soredia; note the brown tips that seem somewhat isidiate, however they do not appear to be the fruticose forms seen in P. glauca.
The soredia; note the brown tips that seem somewhat isidiate, however they do not appear to be the fruticose forms seen in P. glauca.

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Add Comment
By: nastassja (Nastassja Noell)
2012-07-06 06:58:43 CEST (+0200)

I did not know about Platismatia wheeleri … I think I’ve seen them, I’m pretty darn sure, the abundant soredia, perhaps labriform yes, and that isn’t so “dirty looking” definately, and maybe more of a black lower cortex instead of super mottled with brown? Oooh this is so exciting! Platismatia’s were so boring before! I’ll go back through my samples. Lumbsch et al.‘s article “100 new species…” is on its way. I wish I didn’t have a Spanish exam tomorrow morning, having trouble not ripping through collections, just yesterday on this older P. ponderosa branch…

Step-down idea, marginal habitat, interesting, thanks. I’ll have to think about what that means; in that plot I didn’t find Platismatia anywhere but on that rock, what that means about the surrounding habitat, marginal, hmmm. Thanks for the insight Jason – you are the best!!

Step-down effect
By: Jason Hollinger (jason)
2012-07-06 02:02:17 CEST (+0200)

It’s not actually that uncommon to find this growing on rock. T. Goward calls it the “step-down” effect, where normally epiphytic species will “step down” onto rocks where the habitat becomes marginal. You see this on rocks in the alpine all the time.

Be on the look-out for the new species P. wheeleri (http://www.eol.org./pages/Platismatia wheeleri), too. I’m told it is actually more common than P. glauca in some places around Spokane. Look for those obviously-sorediate labriform sinuous soralia. (P. glauca has uglier scattered isidioid “dirty” soralia… where it has soredia at all.)

Created: 2012-07-03 05:20:36 CEST (+0200)
Last modified: 2012-08-26 08:09:39 CEST (+0200)
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