Sunday, June 30, 2013

A fungus among us?

I don't know, but this looks like some kind of fungus or other parasitical plant. It, and others, are growing on the stems of brambles and other plants out by the vineyard. They're pretty, but they don't look like they belong to the plants on which they're growing. They could also be some growth of the host plant that's protecting an insect's eggs or larvae. **Susan and Tim tell me that this is indeed a gall caused by the larvae of a wasp. See the comments for more detail. Thanks S & T!

Anybody recognize this?

It didn't rain much on Saturday, but we had a lot of drizzle most of the day. Later in the evening the sun broke through a bit and we were able to sit out on the deck for a while. Now we're looking forward to a few days of nice, warm weather. Nothing like the heat wave they're having in the southwestern US, though.

Note: I appreciate your taking the time to comment on my posts. Normally I try to respond to your comments, but twice in the past week, after writing responses on previous posts, I hit the wrong key and watched my responses disappear! I didn't try to re-write them. Sorry about that. I'll try to be more careful in the future. :)

7 comments:

  1. It's a bedeguar gall, caused by the wild rose's reaction to a tiny wasp Diplolepis rosae laying eggs in the stem. They are commonly called Robin's Pincushions.

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  2. Walt, they are "pincushion galls" or bedeguar galls...
    cancerous growth caused by the actions of the gall wasp Dipolepis rosae...
    the young grubs live and feed in the spongey growth which hardens over the season to give a woody centre that protects the little critters until they mature and hatch out in late Spring / early Summer the next year....
    the galls are also called Robin's pincushion.
    And it is a wild rose that you are seeing these on...
    not the brambles. Just look at that hooked thorn.
    Personally, I think that they are a wonderful addition to the greenscape around us. And there are loads of other galls... the spikes on lime leaves... the silk buttons on the underside of oak leaves... as well as oak apples and marble galls!

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    Replies
    1. I think Susan and I must have been hitting the keyboards at the same time!! 8-()

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    2. tim, yes, I think you were both tapping away simultaneously. Thanks for the info!

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  3. Well - isn't that interesting...
    Are they soft, like a dishwashing 'scruncher' or sharp? Perhaps you will be brave enough to touch it - now that you know what it is.

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  4. well, you already know my thoughts on the subject of strange plants.

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