Mealy Pixie Cup Lichen
Cladonia chlorophaea
Fam: Cladoniaceae


The fruiting structures of Pixie Lichen, or Cup Fungus are bluish-green throughout, an unusual color among fungi. The cups are small, less than 1/4" in diameter, and usually occur scattered singly on a stained mat, each borne from a cone-like or fluted stalk. Young cups are distinctly cup-shaped, but often become flattened with age. When viewed from above the cups appear circular to oval, or may be irregular in shape, and the edge of the cup is often curved inward. The reproductive spores are formed on the inner surface of the cup. The cup tissue is thin with a smooth exterior. The fungus occurs on moist, rotting limbs and decorticated logs in forested areas. An unusual feature of this fungus is that the wood on which it occurs is also stained bluish-green. In the Escambia region the fungi occurs from late spring to fall (April-November), depending upon moisture.

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