Lichen and granite, mustard yellow and gunmetal grey, happily cohabiting on a grievously exposed sea wall.

A few hours later, in much different circumstances, a friend’s easy chair and contrasting footstool echoed this perfect marriage.

Life imitating life.

Octopus Lichen


Today I was pruning out the demon canker from an old apple tree.  This fungal disease is systematically munching through its aged branches.  Although disfigured by this nibbling, it is blessed by a natty outfit comprising an assortment of lichen, including this one.  North Devon has a lot of lichen.  I am definitely not an expert (at or in anything) but I presume that our propensity in the South West to damp and mild weather is in the lichen’s favour.  Our low levels of pollution also help.  To further your education I have extensively researched (I googled “disc lichen” and scrolled down a bit) and have come up with Lecanora chlarotera as a possible identification.  Unfortunately it doesn’t seem to have a common name.  As the brown discs remind me of an octopus’s suckers I thought we could called it the Octopus Lichen.  Apparently it is quite common.  Not that I have noticed it before. Which is probably more to do with me than the lichen.