February 4th pictures — Dead trees and their dormant, herbaceous buddies

Today I took a walk through the prehistoric jungle conveniently located in my backyard. And I’ve got the non-vascular and other ancient plant pics to prove it. It was pretty chilly today, mostly overcast, but the sun came out later. I’ll put up some more pictures later this weekend of the frozen, temporary stream I risked my life venturing out on.

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The stump of an old arborvitae near the deck. It was cut down a year or two ago; it was trying to eat the deck.

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We are lucky enough to have the rare blue pin oak. No, actually, the house got painted blue this fall. Some of the leaves got painted too, I guess.

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Many of the next few pictures were taken around a huge old tree that came down in a thunder storm several years ago; it's still at the edge of the woods/border of the back garden, kind of looking like a sleeping dragon. If you're fanciful like that. So here's a closeup of the bark of that old tree.

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The downed tree

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This is bizarre. One of the ferns seems to have melded with the surface of the old tree and the lichen and moss growing there.

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The old foliage of one of the ferns against the tree.

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Fern and oak foliage.

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This strange shorn limb looked uncannily like the skull of some kind of bovine entity.

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Lush moss on the side of the tree

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A crack in the tree, some less-lush, less-colorful moss.

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How about that. A little tree growing in a crevice of the dead tree.

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Thought these crevices in the tree looked a little like strange geological formations.

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Curled-over fern foliage. I thought these looked neat, like millipedes or caterpillars or some other insect (ok, arthropod) in a many-legged stage.

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Particularly liked the fine hairs on the veins of this leaf.

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A fertile fern frond.

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One of the many random intra-lawn skating rinks.

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Another view of the ice in our little rink.

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Some evergreen needles frozen into thin layer of ice. Nice to see a little bit more green, too.

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Jabba the Hutt, rear view. Or one of the limbs of our Christmas tree, lying on the edge of one of the paths along the ravine, waiting for its turn to become kindling. It's definitely one of those two.

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Little twig, showing its layers.

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A little maple seed (a helicopter or samara) chilling, figuratively and literally, next to its friend the Leaf.

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It begins, the march of spring in our backyard. Could this be crown vetch? Not sure, but we had a lot of it making itself cozy in this spot the last couple of years.

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10 thoughts on “February 4th pictures — Dead trees and their dormant, herbaceous buddies

    • Thank you, Lois! Can’t get enough of bark, actually. I saw a video on YouTube the other day poking fun of photographers, and it included a scene of a photgrapher getting right up there and taking a closeup of some bark, which was the whole joke I guess. In some commentary I saw regarding this scene, someone said something like, “The old bark cliché, I’ve done that!”

      And I thought…”Me too…almost every single day.” So if I keep committing the same cliché, that’s fine. Seriously, people, look at the stuff! There’s such tremendous variation and it’s beautiful.

  1. Excellent compositions. The blue oak’s leaves do allow them to blend into the sky and effectively hide from little green men, unfortunately birds tend to inadvertently fly into them and knock themselves out, except for bluejays. 🙂

  2. These are some great examples of texture and your composition is great. You should try experimenting with some black and white on these as I am sure the texture will shine with that medium. Great post again.

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