Field of Science

Moss Poem

I came across this poem in the field journal of the British Bryology Society. I thought that it was appropriate timing to post as May Day is tomorrow. I think that it is a great poem of spring celebration! The warm weather is definitely upon us here in Connecticut. The layout in the original has several words spaced out and hanging out in space. I tried to have blogger space them out. However it kept sliding them back to the right no matter what I tried. Thus the dots (...) that I have added as place holders were not in the original version. I have added them to try to approximate the author's formatting as close as possible.

One more week of classes and then a week of final exams. Once the semester is over I am looking forward to getting outside to take some moss photos to post up and comment about on the blog. Until then enjoy the poetry of spring!

The Tundra Terrarium

(May Day, May Day)

My ............. sings! .................................... heart
These new things:
Pollen flings .............................................. first
Microscopic moss
Telescoping stems

Voluptuous, starburst moss

Little tinker-bell lilies
Spotted fawns
Spotted fawn lilies
Caribou antlers on caribou ferns,
Shed for the gentler season
Innocent inocybe
Cleopatra's Calyptrae
Sophocles' Sporophytes
My seen mycena tips its cap
Mushroom mycelium,
My ceiling
The forest is my floor
Earth Bursts

You! - concrete people!
You who live in the city
Have you no thirst?
This little bug
This pollywog .......................................... hand
This quenching,
Quenched land
Plant a plant that stretches
Up and up for the sun
Plant a plant that turns
Its back to darkness
Yearning for the light:

Your soul is suffering for lack of light
Come out, where souls take flight!

Hill, Ruth. Feb 2009. Field Bryology. Bulletin of the British Bryological Society. No. 97, P.23.

Website All About Liverworts

I just heard about this new website entitled, "ELPT: Early Land Plants Today - Uniting Taxonomy, Nomenclature, & Geography". It is a web resource devoted to information on liverworts (Marchantiophyta), one of the three groups of bryophytes.

This webite has a really extensive literature list that includes 12,000 references about liverworts. There are also links to a few taxon pages with sketches of the species. Additionally there is an extensive list of liverwort checklists. A checklist has all the species in a particular group of interest, plant or animal, that occur in a specific region or area of the world. The area a particular checklist covers can be as small as a local park or as extensive as an entire country. They are a good resource for discovering what species occur in your neck of the woods.

Mosses Outside My Apartment

I was sitting in the park next to my apartment building a few days ago and took these photos.

What do you think?

1) The mosses grew like this on the fence bar.
2) They jumped up there to get a better look at the river.
3) People have fun arranging mosses in the park.

I vote for #3. I thought that it was pretty fun to think that someone arranged the mosses in a very decorative manner. But I wonder how many people have seen them and thought that they just grow on the fence like that naturally. I have seen mosses growing on a number of man-made items. However these ones have huge chunks of sand sticking to the bottom of each clump, which makes me think that they were relocated.

I will definitely be on the lookout for more moss relocation "art" in town.

Berry Go Round #15

The latest edition of the plant carnival Berry Go Round has been posted at A Neotropical Savanna. Stop by to check out all of the fabulous plant related posts!

For more about blog carnivals and my posts about the earlier editions of Berry Go Round, click here.