Twig & Moss & Fungus

In the Pacific Northwest, some trees have serious moss and fungus

With all the rain in the Pacific Northwest, moss and fungus are pretty much everywhere. They invade lawns, they dig into shingle roofs, and they grow on the shaded portions of trees large and small.

Where you find one, you will often find the other; they like the same environments.

This was growing on a thin branch of a small tree (maybe 10’ tall), the branch is at the bottom left and is about ⅛” thick. The reddish orange thing on the diagonal from top left to bottom right is the fungus, probably broken into two pieces when I collected the dead branch. The greenery is moss: our version of a succulent. Sort of, anyway.

Technical notes: I set this up for shooting indoors; it’s cold and wet outside. I shot with the LOMO 3.7X microscope objective on the Sony, and on a new focus stacking rail, the StackShot. It’s about the same size as the WeMacro, but the controller has a lot more options. I sent the WeMacro off to be refitted with a different stepper motor and controller so we can use it for aligning and calibrating the one-meter telescope in New Mexico.

This was about a 100 shots over 4mm, so about 40 microns between shots. (I do this because microscope objectives have rather slim in-focus zones.)

I had added a 1” space to the setup for the LOMO 3.7X, which should make it give a bit more magnification, and move some of the poorer-performing areas of the objective (near the corners) out of the shot. Not entirely accomplished with the change, but the corners have improved from really sloppy to merely a bit mushy, which is fine. At this size, one hardly notices; it’s all about the moss and fungus and tree relationships.