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Even though it’s only 9 p.m., I had to fight to stay awake and force myself to draw, fast, so that I could go to bed. I didn’t get enough sleep last night, and tomorrow will be a busy day.

So I quickly looked up photos of limber pine–so called, a direct translation of its Latin name, because the twigs are so flexible they can be tied into knots–and some prominent ones that popped up were brown and spotted with needle cast. This has happened before. Apparently a common reason for someone to post pictures of pine needles is that they are suffering from some kind of illness or infestation. Needle cast is caused by a number of fungi; in this case, the fungus is Bifusella saccata. I am feeling a powerful need to learn more about these fungi, but as I said: tired. Now that I have documented a few ailing needles, I’m going to bed.

Decidedly not a native, but it was introduced thoroughout this continent and has become naturalized in some parts of the United States. In California, it is cultivated for various purposes,  including Christmas  trees.

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