Life between pier blocks

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Life between pier blocks

Postby PoC » Tue Mar 12, 2013 4:45 pm

A couple pier blocks have been stacked in the back yard for quite a while now. I moved one of them and found all this life.

Cardamine hirsuta (Hairy bittercress, popweed) plants and roots show here
IMG_1615.JPG


A tiny snail. Similar size to an ant.
IMG_1620.JPG


IMG_1617.JPG


Woodlouse
IMG_1632.JPG


Growing off the sides
IMG_1634.JPG

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Re: Life between pier blocks

Postby Cactusdan » Tue Mar 12, 2013 4:57 pm

Nice shots PoC!

Have so many hairy bittercress around here.....sometimes gets on my nerves hehe.

Happen to hear anything about their ecosystem functions?

Also, think I'll post this here, as it relates a bit :P

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Re: Life between pier blocks

Postby PoC » Tue Mar 12, 2013 5:13 pm

Well they're pretty invasive but check out all those fine hair-like roots. That means the soil becomes aerated and water is held for longer in the area of those roots. This is true while the plant is living and also true when the plant has decayed. The plants are pretty small too so they don't really compete with most garden and landscape plants. They are edible and actually taste alright. Not difficult to uproot just difficult to eradicate.

I think how aggressively they seed themselves is both their best and worst feature. The pier block I took pictures of wouldn't be the same little microhabitat it is if the Cardamine hirsuta plants weren't around.

Also nice pic :D

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