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The Christmas Wreath Lichen

This is a common lichen here in Florida. It grows on the trunks of oaks, cypress and palm trees. Another common name for it is baton rouge lichen a French term for red stick.  Some tree trunks become so covered with this fiery red lichen that they look like large red sticks.

This species (Cyptothecia rubrocincta) is abundant along the Gulf Coast through  Mexico, and in the tropical areas of Central and South America. It also grows along the Atlantic Coast to North Carolina. If you live in any of these areas, look for it in your local woodlands. It is a hard lichen to miss if it is there.

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