Common name :

Scientific name :
Sticta caulescens
De Not.


Substrate and Habitat:
Sticta caulescens is a Common lichen. It is found growing over dead wood and basal portions of trees and shrubs throughout shady and somewhat open humid forest habitats.

This species can also grow on rocks and gravel in very shaded river beds and banks or waterfall spray zones. Occuring from sealevel to subalpine.

Thallus foliose and erect in habit, broadly trumpet shaped to more often flattened and divided and palm-like, frequently with a distinctly elongate, sometimes woody stalk. Lobes thin, irregularly lobed to elongate branching, young lobe tips often with white cottony projecting hairs. Upper surface tan to dark brown to bluish-grey when dry, dark grey when wet. Top surface texture smooth, without hairs.


Upper surface of Sticta caulescens, showing its apothecia.  

Lower surface white and shining at lobe tips, darkening inwards, uniformly covered in fine tomentum. Cyphellae tiny, tan to white, widely distributed over the whole bottom surface. Circular depression often visible under apothecia. Margins entire, without soreida or isidia. Apothecia submarginal, reddish tan to brown, with a lighter colored rim. Medulla white. Photobiont bluegreen.

Lower surface of Sticta caulescens


Sticta hypochra has a similar shape, habitat and color but is always isidiate.

Sticta longipes is usually much longer and narrower lobed, consistently light grey to slate grey and always marginally granular isidiate.

  Fine tomentum at the tip of the lower surface of Sticta caulescens.    
Written by Peter Nelson and Tim Wheeler.
Photographs by Tim Wheeler.