Ethnolichenology of the World


PART I:  A brief look at lichens and people
       Folk taxonomy of lichens
       Lichen mythology
       Uses of lichens by people
       Variation within a lichen species
       Lichens as medicine
       Lichens as food
       Lichens as dye

PART II:  An inventory of lichen species that are used by people
       Lichens A-M
       Lichens N-X and unidentified lichens
       Index of lichen names

REFERENCES CITED

TABLES
       Table 1:  Preparation methods of lichens used as food by people
       Table 2:  A summary of studies on the nutritional composition of lichens
       Table 3:  A summary of lichens being used as dyes

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PART II: An inventory of lichen species that are used by people



NOTE:

    All lichens are listed alphabetically according to their scientific name.  If there is information about lichen uses that is general across a genus, or if the exact species used is unknown, this information is entered under the heading Genus spp. and is placed before all other entries of that genus.  There are some lichens recorded in ethnographic literature of unknown genus, and these are entered at the end of the list.
    There are many synonyms in the naming of lichens.  Ethnographic literature is often very inconsistent in the names used for various lichens.  To attempt to reduce confusion, all lichens were named according to the following works, in order of preference:
    Brodo et al. (2001): Only deals with selected North American species
    McCune (2000): Only deals with North American Usnea species
    Esslinger (1997): Only deals with North American species
    DePreist (2002): Only deals with Cladonia species
    CABI Bioscience Databases (2001): All species, but synonyms incomplete



Lichens A-M

Lichens N-X and unidentified lichens

Index of lichen names




Nephroma arcticum [“Arctic kidney lichen”, “Green light”]

FOLK NAMES:
    Kusskoak (Yuqpik: Alaska)

USES:    Food (Yuqpik: Alaska), Medicine (Yuqpik: Alaska)

    Nephroma arcticum is called Kusskoak (kus’koak) by the Yuqpik of southwest Alaska (Oswalt 1957; Wilson 1979).  These lichens are uncommon, but can be found on or near decaying trees.  The lichens were collected and stored until winter, when they were boiled with crushed fish eggs and eaten.  Nephroma arcticum was also reputed to be a very effective medicine.  It was made into an infusion with hot water and fed to a person in weak condition to make him strong (Oswalt 1957; Wilson 1979).
    Nephroma arcticum contains usnic acid, zeorin, nephroarctin, and phenarctin (Brodo et al. 2001).



Nephroma parile [“Powdery kidney lichen”]

USES:    Dye (Scotland)

    Nephroma parile was used in Scotland to make a blue dye for woolens (Uphof 1959).
    This lichen may contain zeorin (Brodo et al. 2001).



Ochrolechia oregonensis [“Double rime saucer lichen”]

USES:    Dye (west coast of North America)

    This lichen grows on the North American west coast and can be used in the same way as the European Ochrolechia tartaracea to produce a purple dye (Brodo et al. 2001).  SEE: Ochrolechia tartaracea.
    Ochrolechia oregonensis contains gyrophoric acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Ochrolechia parella [syn. Lecanora parella]

FOLK NAMES:
    Orseille d’Auvergne (France)

USES: Dye (France, Britain)

NOTE:    Not found in North America.

    This lichen was used in France and Britain to make a violet dye that was used on wool (Uphof 1959).  The dye and lichen were referred to as Orseille d’Auvergne.  Before it was used for dye it had to be treated with ammonia (probably urine).  The lichen was pulped with water and ammonia, and then left to ferment for 2 to 3 weeks.
    Ochrolechia species usually contain orcinol depsides (Brodo et al. 2001).



Ochrolechia tartarea [“Cudbear”; syn. Lecanora tartarea, Lichen tartarea]

USES:    Dye (Scotland)

NOTE:    Not found in North America

    In Scotland Ochrolechia tartarea (as well as, to a lesser extent, other Ochrolechia species) was used to produce a purple-crimson to blue dye that was called  Cudbaer or Tincture of Cudbear (Uphof 1959; Brodo et al. 2001).  It was very popular and commercially exploited from 1758 until the early 1800’s (Brodo et al. 2001).  But because the lichen grows very slowly it was completely depleted within those 50 years and had to be replaced by Umbilicaria spp. (in the north) or Roccella spp. (in the Mediterranean) as a source of purple dye (Brodo et al. 2001).  When it was used as a dye Ochrolechia tartarea was scraped off rocks in huge quantities and processed using a secret formula of the Gordon (née Cuthbert) family (Brodo et al. 2001).  Ochrolechia tartarea also produced the litmus Erdorseile (Uphof 1959).
    Uphof also (1959) records that Lecanora tartarea [a synonym for Ochrolechia tartarea] was used in Sweden and Scotland to make a red to crimson dye for yarn and cloth.  It was collected in May and June, and then steeped in stale urine for three weeks.  This produced a bluish black mass which was made into 0.75 lb. cakes and hung dry in peat smoke.  The lichen would last for many years if it was prepared this way.  It was a source of Lacmus, Turnshe, and Lacca Musica.
    Ochrolechia oregonensis grows on the North American west coast and can be used in the same way as the European Ochrolechia tartaracea to produce a purple dye (Brodo et al. 2001).
Ochrolechia tartarea contains gyrophoric acid (Brodo et al. 2001), and so it would have yielded purple pigment if it was fermented in ammonia (most likely urine).



Ophioparma lapponica [syn. Haemotomma ventosum in North America]

USES: Dye (Sweden?)

    Uphof (1959) lists that Haemotomma ventosum was used as a red-brown dye for wool in Sweden (Uphof 1959).  This may or may not be a valid European taxon.  In North America the lichen that was called Haemotomma ventosum is actually Ophioparma lapponica.  According to Brodo et al. (2001) Ophioparma lapponica, along with the closely related Ophioparma ventosa, were both used as a source of purple-red to magenta dyes for wool. 
    Species of the Haemotomma genus generally contain red pigments such as russulone and haematommone (Brodo et al. 2001).  Both Ophioparma lapponica and Ophioparma ventosa contain divaricatic acid which is probably the source of the purplish pigment (Brodo et al. 2001).  Populations of Ophioparma ventosa in Europe are chemically different, and contain thamnolic acid as well (2001).



Parmelia spp.

NOTE:    The Parmelia genus was very large until it was divided into several different genera starting in 1974.  Parmelia has now been divided into the following genera: Arctoparmelia, Ahtiana, Bulbothrix, Canomaculina, Canoparmelia, Flavoparmelia, Flavopunctelia, Hypotrachyna, Parmelia, Parmelina, Parmelinopsis, Parmotrema, Punctelia, Rimelia, and Xanthoparmelia.  Any reference to Parmelia spp. before 1974 could be referring to Parmelia spp., or to any of the above mentioned genera.

FOLK NAMES:
    Gadna [name also applied to other Umbilicaria-like and Parmelia-like lichens growing on
       rocks and trees] (Saami: northern Scandinavia)

USES:    Medicine (India, China), Animal forage (Saami: northern Scandinavia)

    Species of Parmelia are traditionally used as medicine in China and India (Brodo et al. 2001).
Parmelia spp. and other Parmelia-like and Umbilicaria-like lichens growing on rocks and trees (probably including most of the genera mentioned in the above note) are called Gadna by the Saami of northern Scandinavia, and they recognize that these lichens are only eaten by reindeer when no other lichens are available.  SEE: Cladina spp. for more information on this.



Parmelia abessinica Kremp.

NOTE:    This may not be a current name.  There is no record of this lichen in North America.

FOLK NAMES:   
    Rathipuvvu (India)

USES:    Food (India), Medicine (India)

    Parmelia abessinica is called Rathipuvvu in India and is eaten, generally as a curry powder (Llano 1944b).  It is also eaten medicinally (Llano 1944b).



Parmelia acetabulum (Neck.) Duby [syn. “Parmelia acebatulum”, Melanelia acetabulum]

SEE:    Melanelia acetabulum


Parmelia borreri [syn. “Parmelia borreria”, Punctelia borreri]

SEE:    Punctelia borreri


Parmelia camtschadalis (Ach.) Eschw. [syn. “Parmelia kamptschadalis”, Xanthoparmelia
camtschadalis??]

SEE:    Xanthoparmelia camtschadalis


Parmelia caperata [syn. Flavoparmelia caperata]

SEE:    Flavoparmelia caperata


Parmelia centrifuga [syn. Arctoparmelia centrifuga]

SEE:    Arctoparmelia centrifuga


Parmelia cirrhata [syn. Everniastrum cirrhatum]

SEE:    Everniastrum cirrhatum

NOTE:    Everniastrum cirrhatum does not grow in North America.  Reports of this lichen in North America are misidentifications.


Parmelia conspersa [syn. Xanthoparmelia conspersa]

SEE:    Xanthoparmelia conspersa



Parmelia furfuracea [syn. Pseudevernia furfuracea]

SEE:    Pseudevernia furfuracea

NOTE:    Pseudevernia furfuracea does not grow in North America.  References to Parmelia furfuracea in North American ethnographic literature are probably referring to Pseudevernia consocians and Pseudevernia intense.
 


Parmelia hyporysalea

NOTE:    This may not be a current name.  There is no record of this lichen in North America.

FOLK NAMES:
    Chharila [but name generally applied to Parmotrema chinense, Parmotrema perforatum,
       and Everniastrum cirrhatum] (India)

USES:    Medicine (India)

    Chharila is the name of a widely used lichen crude drug in India that is generally applied to Parmotrema chinense, Parmotrema perforatum, and Everniastrum cirrhatum.  However, analysis of Chharila by Chandra and Singh (1971) showed that over 50% of the drug was actually other lichens, one of which is Parmelia hyporysalea.  For information on Chharila SEEParmotrema chinense.



Parmelia “kamtschadalis” [syn. Parmelia camtschadalis, Xanthoparmelia camtschadalis??]

SEE:    Xanthoparmelia camptschadalis


Parmelia olivacea [syn. Melanelia olivacea]

SEE:    Melanelia olivacea



Parmelia omphalodes [“Smoky crottle”]

FOLK NAMES:
    Crottle [name also applied to Parmelia saxatilis] (Scotland)

USES:    Dye (Scotland, Scandinavia, Ireland)

    Parmelia omphalodes and Parmelia saxatilis were both called crottle and traditionally gathered in large quantities by the Hebrides of Scotland as a source of deep red-brown and rusty orange boiling water dyes (Brodo et al. 2001).  Uphof (1959) records that the dye was also used in Scandinavia and Ireland.  According to Uphof (1959) the dye required simple mordants and was purple to crimson in colour.
    Parmelia omphalodes contains atranorin and salazinic acid, and usually lobaric acid (Brodo et al. 2001).  Salazinic acid can produce a dye (Brodo et al. 2001).



Parmelia paraguariensis  [syn. “Parmelia paraguariensi”]

NOTE:    This may not be a current name.  There is no record of this lichen in North America.

FOLK NAMES:
    Duftfletche [lit. “Fragrant lichen”] (German translation, ??Mauritania)

USES:    Tobacco (Mauritania), Cosmetics (Mauritania), Insect repellant (Mauritania)

    Lange (1957) reported on how Parmelia paraguariensi is used as a tobacco in Mauritania after being imported from several hundred kilometers to the northwest where it grows.
    Maurita in the south Sahara is a dry desert area where it is regularly 48˚C.  Nomads come from far away to the market in the city of Atar to buy, sell, and chat.  At the market they sell food, millet, grain, melon, mint tea, bars of salt from a marsh, and buy sugar, spices, cuscus, camel and goat meat, and dates.
    Lange purchased a bag of Parmelia paraguariensi from a local vender for 10 Franken (20 cents).  The lichen was chopped up into little pieces so it looked like an herb, but the upper and lower surface, as well as apothecia and bits of bark were still apparent.  The lichen smelled strong like perfume and hot like pepper.  Lange thought it was quite because the merchant had very good business. Lange referred to the lichen as Duftfletche (fragrant lichen).  This may be a German translation of the Maure name for the lichen.
    To use the lichen, a Maure man crushes the lichen in his hand and mixes it with tobacco, one part lichen to ten parts tobacco.  He then packs it into a goat bone pipe and smokes it.  The Maure quite enjoy the smoke it but Lange thought that it must be an acquired taste.  The lichen has several other uses as well, but it is mainly used for its smell.  The women do not smoke the lichen, but they use it for a dry perfume.  They pulverize the lichen and use it like powder in their hair and dress.  Lange thought that this lichen is the source of the traditional Maurian smell.  The lichen is also used as an insect repellent.  It is light on fire in the house and the fragrant smoke drives insects away.
    Interestingly, the untreated lichen has no smell.  The lichen must be saturated with rose oil and other essences to give it the characteristic fragrance.  The lichen is probably used to carry the smell because it is so absorbent.
    Around Atar it is desert and there are only crust lichens around the area.  Parmelia paraguariensi does not grow anywhere within several hundred kilometers.  The merchant Lange purchased the lichen from said that he had to go 12 days camel ride north and 9 days camel ride west to reach the lichen.  This would be somewhere in the mountains of the Spanish Rio de Oro, which is about 750 km away. Parmelia paraguariensi is a very rare (but locally common) species of lichen, first found in 1893 in one spot in Paraguay, and later found at one site on the Ivory Coast.  Where the lichen is being collected is one of the few places in the world where it grows. Parmelia paraguariensi appears to be used a lot by the Maurians, which is amazing given how rare it is and how far away it grows.



Parmelia parietina Ach.

NOTE:    This may not be a current name.  There is no record of this lichen in North America.

USES:    Medicine (Europe)

    Parmelia parietina is bitter and is used as a cure for intermittent fevers (Lindley 1838).



Parmelia perforata [syn. Parmotrema perforatum]

SEE:    Parmotrema perforatum


Parmelia perlata [syn. Parmotrema chinense]

SEE:    Parmotrema chinense


Parmelia physodes [syn. Hypogymnia physodes]

SEE:    Hypogymnia physodes


Parmelia sancti-angelii Lynge [??syn. Parmotrema sancti-angelii]

SEE:    Parmotrema sancti-angelii



Parmelia saxatilis [“Salted shield lichen”, “Crottle”; syn. Lichen saxatilis]

FOLK NAMES:
    Quajuq [name also applied to Peltigera aphthosa and Stereocaulon paschale] (Barrens-
       Keewatin Inuit)
    Muscus cranii humanii [when growing on human skull] (Medieval Europe)
    Wa’-hat-tak (Nishinam: California)
    Grey lichen or Grey moss (England)
    Crottle (Scotland)

USES:    Medicine (Medieval Europe, Nishinam: California), Fiber (Barrens-Keewatin Inuit), Dye (Scotland, Ireland), Ritual (England)

    In 15th century Europe Parmelia saxatilis was called Muscus cranii humanii when it was growing on a human skull (this may also have been referring to a Physcia).   This lichen was used as a cure for epilepsy and was worth its weight in gold (Perez-Llano 1944).
    Powers (1877: pg 423) records that Parmelia saxicola (most likely referring to Parmelia saxatilis) was called Wa’-hat-tak by the Nishinam of California.  It was made into a tea and used to treat colic.
    Flat lichens, such as Parmelia saxatilis, Peltigera aphthosa, and Stereocaulon paschale were called Quajuq by the Barrens-Keewatin Inuit.  They were used, along with any other handy fill, to stuff caribou skins for rafts to cross inland streams that were to deep to ford (Wilson 1979).
    Parmelia saxatilis and Parmelia omphalodes were both called crottle and traditionally gathered in large quantities by the Hebrides of Scotland as a source of deep red-brown and rusty orange boiling water dyes (Brodo et al. 2001).  This dye is used for Harris Tweed, and the scent of this material is due to this lichen (Uphof 1959).  According to Uphof (1959) this dye was also used in western Ireland, and Parmelia saxatilis can also be used to form a yellow dye.  Uphof (1959) also reports that Parmelia saxatilis is usually collected in August when it is supposed to be the richest in dye materials. 
    Parmelia saxatilis is also used for well-dressing in England, which is described by Vickery (1975).  Well-dressing is a traditional ritual started in the early 19th century and until recently restricted to the White Peak area of Derbyshire.  In this ritual plant materials are used to create miniature scenes (often religious) in large trays (up to 3.7 m in length).  Then, during a festival in the summer, the wells in town are “dressed” by leaning these trays against them.  As these trays are left up for several weeks, durable plant materials must be used. Parmelia saxatilis, along with Xanthoria parietina, is often used.
    Parmelia saxatilis can absorb enough beryllium from the environment to be harmful (Perez-Llano 1944).  Parmelia saxatilis contains salazinic acid, atranorin, usually lobaric acid, and sometimes fatty acids (Brodo et al. 2001).  The salazinic acid is what forms the dye (Brodo et al. 2001).



Parmelia saxicola

NOTE:    This lichen is recorded in North American ethnographic literature, but is not a valid name for a North American lichen.  It is probably simply referring to a saxicolous (growing on rock) species of Parmelia, the most likely candidate for this is Parmelia saxatilis (Brodo et al. 2001).

SEE:    Parmelia saxatilis



Parmelia stygia [syn. Melanelia stygia]

SEE:    Melanelia stygia



Parmelia sulcata [“Hammered shield lichen”]

USES:    Medicine (Medieval Europe), Dye

    Parmelia sulcata was used for treating cranial diseases in Europe in the Middle Ages because of the signature doctrine (González-Tejero et al. 1995).  Because Parmelia sulcata contains salazinic acid it can be used for dyeing wool (Brodo et al. 2001).
    Parmelia sulcata contains atranorin, salazinic, and sometimes lobaric acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Parmelia tinctorum [syn. Parmotrema tinctorum]

SEE: Parmotrema tinctorum



Parmotrema chinense [“Powdered ruffle lichen”; syn. Parmelia perlata]

FOLK NAMES:
    Chharila [name also applied to Parmotrema perforatum and Everniastrum cirrhatum]
       (India)

USES:    Food (India), Medicine (India)

    Species of Parmotrema are collected in large quantities as a food supplement in India (Brodo et al. 2001).  Parmotrema spp. are also mentioned in Indian Materia Medica (K. M. Nadkarni, ed., 1976) as useful in treating a number of ailments. Parmotrema chinense in particular, along with Parmotrema perforatum, is used medicinally in India as a diuretic, headache remedy, sedative, and antibiotic for wounds (Brodo et al. 2001).
    Chharila is a lichen crude drug sold in Indian bazaars and used in Ayurvedic and Unani systems of medicine and it is described by Chandra and Singh (1971).  Three lichens can be called Chharila: Parmotrema chinense, Parmotrema perforatum, and/or Everniastrum cirrhatum. The smoke of Chharila is believed to relieve headaches.  When powdered it is applied on wounds, and it is considered to be a good cephalic snuff. Chharila has also been considered useful in dyspepsia, spermatorrhoea, amonorrhoea, calculi, diseases of the blood and heart, stomach disorders, enlarged spleen, bronchitis, bleeding piles, scabies, leprosy, excessive salivation, soreness of the throat, toothache, and pain in general. When the drug was analyzed by Chandra and Singh (1971) it only contained Everniastrum cirrhatum and Parmotrema perforatum.  And about 50% of the Chharila was other lichens which may have just been adulterants: Leptogium spp., Parmelia hyporysalea, Ramalina spp., Usnea spp., and Anaptychia spp.
    Parmotrema chinense analyzed in India contains atranorin and lecanoric acid (Chandra and Singh 1971).  Brodo et al. (2001) report that it contains atranorin and a stictic acid complex with traces of norstictic acid.



Parmotrema perforatum [“Perforated ruffle lichen”; syn. Parmelia perforata]

FOLK NAMES:
    Chharila [name also applied to Parmotrema chinense and Everniastrum cirrhatum]
       (India)

USES:    Food (India), Medicine (India)

    Parmotrema perforatum is used in India as a food and medicinally in the same way as Parmotrema chinenseSEEParmotrema chinense.
    Parmotrema perforatum analyzed in India contained azeorin, atranorin, and lecanoric acid (Chandra and Singh 1971).  Brodo et al. (2001) reports that Parmotrema perforatum contains atranorin and norstictic acid.



Parmotrema sancti-angelii (Lynge) Hale [??syn. Parmelia sancti-angelii]

NOTE:    Not found in North America

FOLK NAMES:
    Jhavila (Gond and Oraon: India)

USES:    Medicine (Gond and Oraon: India)

    Lal and Upreti (1995) report that Parmelia sancti-angelii is called Jhavila by the Gond and Oraon tribes of central India and it is used to treat a ring-worm like skin disease called Sem that causes white patches around the neck.  To treat Sem, about 30 to 50 grams of the fresh lichen is burned.  The ash is mixed with either mustard (Brassica nigra) or linseed (Linum usitatissimum) oil and the paste then applied to the affected area.
    Parmotrema species contain atranorin, a variety of b-orcinol depsidones (especially norstictic, stictic, and protocetraric acids), depsides (e. g. alectoronic acid), occasionally fatty acids or orcinol depsides (such as lecanoric or gyrophoric acid, and rarely usnic acid (Brodo et al. 2001).  Lal and Upreti (1995) report that the Indian specimens of Parmelia sancti-angelii contain atranorin in the cortex and gyrophoric acid in the medulla.



Parmotrema tinctorum [syn. Parmelia tinctorum]

FOLK NAMES:
    Al-Sheba (Arabic)

USES:    Food (western Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman)

    Abo-Khatwa et al. (1996) records that Parmotrema tinctorum is edible and consumed as a food spice in some Arab countries.  It is called Al-Sheba in Arabic and used in western Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman.  The lichen can be purchased at markets in Jeddah. 
    Parmotrema tinctorum contains atranorin, which is known to be a food deterrent for herbivores (Abo-Khatwa et al. 1996).



Peltigera spp.

FOLK NAMES:
    P’elems [name also applied to Peltigera spp., Alectoria spp., Sticta spp., and mosses]
       (Southern Kwakiult)
    (Tl)’a(tl)’x7a·7aq [lit. “the ones flat against the rock”] or (Tl)’i·(tl)’i·dqwaqsibak’kw [lit.
       “resembling whale’s baleen”] [both names also applied to other Peltigera spp.] (Southern
       Kwakiult)
    Nagaganaw [lit. “Frog’s dress”] or “Frog’s blanket” [translation] [these names may also
       have been applied to Lobaria oregana, and possibly Peltigera neopolydactyla or other
       Peltigera spp.] (Gitksan: British Columbia)

USES:    Fiber (Southern Kwakiult), Medicine (Southern Kwakiult, Gitksan?), Ritual (Gitksan?)

    Turner and Bell (1973) record that the Southern Kwakiult refer to Peltigera spp., along with Alectoria spp., Sticta spp. and mosses, as P’elems and they used these ‘plants’ as household materials for activities such as lining steaming pits and wiping blood and slime off salmon (washing or scraping the fish ruined the taste).  The Southern Kwakiult further differentiated Peltigera spp. from other P’elems and called Peltigera spp. by the name (tl)’a(tl)’x7a·7aq (the ones flat against the rock) or (tl)’i·(tl)’i·dqwaqsibak’kw (resembling whale’s baleen) (Turner et al. 1983).  The Southern Kwakiult used a gray Peltigera-like lichen (possibly Peltigera membranacea or Peltigera aphthosa) growing on rocks was used as a medicine (Turner et al. 1983).  This lichen was picked, washed, squashed, eaten.  When it was given to a man who could not urinate, the man urinated within 30 minutes.
    Peltigera spp. may also have been used medicinally and in ritual by the Gitksan.  SEE: Lobaria pulmonaria for information on the use of Nagaganaw [lit. “Frog’s dress”] or “Frog’s blanket”.
    A species of Peltigera was found to have some antibiotic properties (Burkholder et al. 1944).  A crude extract of this lichen inhibits Bacillus subtilis.



Peltigera aphthosa [“Common freckle pelt”, “Pelt lichen”]

FOLK NAMES:
    Quajuq [name also applied to Parmelia saxatilis and Stereocaulon paschale] (Barrens-Keewatin Inuit)
    T’it’idic˘c˘7a· [lit. “rocks growing on rocks”] (Nitinaht: British Columbia)

USES:    Fiber (Barrens-Keewatin), Medicine (Europe, Nitinaht: British Columbia, Tlingit: Alaska)

    Flat lichens such as Peltigera aphthosa, Parmelia saxatilis, and Stereocaulon paschale were called Quajuq by the Barrens-Keewatin Inuit.  These lichens were used, along with any other handy fill, to stuff caribou skins for rafts to cross inland streams to deep to ford (Wilson 1979).
    Peltigera aphthosa may have been the plant referred to as t’it’idic˘c˘7a· (rocks growing on rocks) by the Nitinaht (Turner and Bell 1973).  This plant was chewed and eaten for tuberculosis.  According to Brodo et al. (2001) t’it’idic˘c˘7a· is probably referring to both Peltigera aphthosa and Peltigera britannica.  Brodo et al. (2001) also state that both of these lichens were used by the Tlingit of coastal Alaska to make poultices for burns and scalds.  Peltigera aphthosa may also be the Peltigera spp. that was used by the Nitinaht to treat a man who could not urinate (SEE: Peltigera spp.) (Turner et al. 1983).
    In Europe in the 15th century the signature theory of medicine led to Peltigera aphthosa being used as a cure for children suffering from eruptions in the mouth, ailment that they called ‘thrush’ (Perez-Llano 1944).  In the mid-eighteenth century Swedish mothers still boiled this lichen in milk as a remedy for thrush (Brodo et al. 2001).  In 1838 Lindley recorded Peltigera aphthosa as a purgative and anthelmintic.  Uphof (1959) records that Peltigera aphthosa is a good source of dextro-mannose and dextro-galactose.
    Peltigera aphthosa contains tenuiorin, methyl gyrophate, gyrophoric acid, and triterpenes (Brodo et al. 2001).



Peltigera britannica [“Flaky freckle pelt”]

FOLK NAMES:
    T’it’idic˘c˘7a· [lit. “rocks growing on rocks”] (Nitinaht: British Columbia)

USES:    Medicine (Nitinaht: British Columbia, Tlingit: Alaska)

    According to Brodo et al. (2001) Peltigera britannica, along with Peltigera aphthosa, may have been the plant that the Nitinaht referred to as t’it’idic˘c˘7a· and chewed and ate to treat tuberculosis (Turner and Bell 1973). Brodo et al. (2001) also state that both of these lichens were used by the Tlingit of coastal Alaska to make poultices for burns and scalds.
    Peltigera britannica contains tenuiorin, methyl gyrophate, gyrophoric acid, and triterpenes (Brodo et al. 2001).




Peltigera canina [“Dog lichen”]

FOLK NAMES:
    Tl’extl’ekw’és [lit. “seaweed of the ground”] or Lexlek’is [lit. “Echo”] (Southern Kwakiult)
    Pulvus antilyssus (Europe)

USES:    Medicine (India, Europe, Hesquiat Nootka: British Columbia), Love Charm (Southern Kwakiult: British Columbia),

    Peltigera canina is eaten in India as a remedy for liver ailments (Saklani and Upreti 1992 attribute this practice to India; Hale 1983 attributes it to Hindu people; and Subramanian and Ramakrishnan 1964 attribute it to people of the Himalayas).  Peltigera canina’s effectiveness in treating liver problems may be do to its high methionine content (Saklani and Upreti 1992; Subremanian and Ramakrishnan 1964).  Subramanian and Ramakrishnan (1964) also record that the lichen is used as a food and general tonic in the Himalayas.
    The Hesquiat Nootka of British Columbia remembered Peltigera canina as a medicinal plant, but a name or specific use was not recorded (Turner and Efrat 1982).  In the 15th century Europe Peltigeria canina was called Pulvus antilyssus and sold by the famous Dr. Mead as a cure for hydrophobia (Perez-Llano 1944).  In 1846 the Pharmacopoeia Universalis still listed medicinal uses for Peltigera canina (Saklani and Upreti 1992).
    Peltigera canina was called tl’extl’ekw’és (seaweed of the ground) or lexlek’is (echo) by the Southern Kwakiult (Turner and Bell 1973) and they used it as a love charm (Boas 1921, cited in Turner and Bell 1973).  Peltigera canina was used in Europe to make an iron-red dye to colour woolens (Uphof 1959).
    Peltigera canina has no lichen substances (Brodo et al. 2001).  Subramanian and Ramakrishnan (1964) tested the protein content of Peltigera canina from the Chamoli District in the Himalaya.  Peltigera canina was found to be 21% protein.  It contained 9 free amino acids and 4 more acid and alkali hydrolysates of amino acids.  Five of the free amino acids and 3 of the combined amino acids were essential.  The free essential amino acids were  leucine, phenylalanine, threonine, valine, and methionine.  The combined essential amino acids were  isoleucine, tryptophan, and lysine.  This shows that Peltigera canina contains 8 out of the 9 essential amino acids.  The lichen contained all the essential amino acids except for histidine, and these amino acids are almost in the perfect ratio recommended by the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies (2002), the only exception to this being that there is not quite enough leucine or methionine.  The food value of Peltigera canina, as well as its use in treating liver complaints, could be due to its high protein and essential amino acid content, of which the free methionine content could be the most significant (Subramanian and Ramakrishnan 1964).
   


Peltigera horizontalis [“Flat fruited pelt”]

USES:    Medicine (Europe)

    The Pharmacopoeia Universalis of 1846 lists medicinal uses for Peltigera horizontalis (Saklani and Upreti 1992).
    Peltigera horizontalis contains tenuiorin, methyl gyrophorate, gyrophoric acid, and triterpenes (Brodo et al. 2001).



Peltigera membranacea [“Membranous dog-lichen”]

USES:    Medicine (Nitinaht: British Columbia)

    Peltigera membranacea may be the Peltigera spp. that was used by the Nitinaht to treat a man who could not urinate (SEE: Peltigera spp.) (Turner et al. 1983).
    Peltigera membranacea contains no lichen substances (Brodo et al. 2001).



Peltigera neopolydactyla [“Carpet pelt”]

FOLK NAMES:
    Nagaganaw [lit. “Frog’s dress”] or “Frog’s blanket” [translation] [these names may also
       have been applied to Lobaria oregana, and possibly Peltigera neopolydactyla or other
       Peltigera spp.] (Gitksan: British Columbia)

USES:    Medicine? (Gitksan: British Columbia), Ritual? (Gitksan: British Columbia)

    Peltigera spp. may also have been used medicinally and in ritual by the Gitksan.  SEE: Lobaria pulmonaria for information on the use of Nagaganaw [lit. “Frog’s dress”] or “Frog’s blanket”.
    Peltigera neopolydactyla contains tenuiorin, methyl gyrophorate, gyrophoric acid, and triterpenes (Brodo et al. 2001).



Peltigera polydactyla

FOLK NAMES:
    Jhau [name also applies generally to lichen] (Lepchas: India)

USES:    Medicine (Lepchas: India; Europe)

NOTE:    This may not be a valid taxon.  In North America the species Peltigera polydactyla has been divided into Peltigera hymenina and Peltigera neopolydactyla.   It  has also been suggested that Peltigera polydactyla is synonymous with Peltigera neckeri.

    Peltigera polydactyla was referred to as jhau (lichen) by the Lepchas of the Sakyong valley in Sikkim, India (Saklani and Upreti 1992).  They prepared it into a paste and applied it to cuts to stop bleeding.  It was also used as an antiseptic.  The Pharmacopoeia Universalis of 1846 lists medicinal uses for Peltigera polydactyla (Saklani and Upreti 1992).
    Peltigera polydactyla specimens in India contain tenuionin and dolichorrhizin (Saklani and Upreti 1992).



Peltigera venosa [“Fan lichen”]

USES:    Medicine (Europe)

    The Pharmacopoeia Universalis of 1846 lists medicinal uses for Peltigera venosa (Saklani and Upreti 1992).
    Peltigera venosa contains triterpenes (including zeorin) and tenuiorin (Brodo et al. 2001).



Pertusaria spp. [“Wart lichens”; syn. Variolaria spp.]

USES:    Chemical Manufacture (France), Medicine (Europe), Dye (France)

    According to Llano (1944) Pertusaria spp. is bitter and yields 18% lime and 29.4% oxalic acid, and was employed in France in the manufacture of the acid.  The now defunct genus Variolaria is included within Pertusaria.  Various Variolaria species are named as being used to treat fevers and I have attempted to list them below under their current names, however some of the synonyms may be wrong.
    Uphof (1959) lists Variolaria orcina as being used in France to make a violet dye for woolens.  This is probably referring to some species of Pertusaria.
    Pertusaria species contain a variety of depsides and depsidones, and often xanthones (Brodo et al. 2001).



Pertusaria amara [“Bitter wart lichen”; syn. ??Variolaria faginea, Variolaria amara,
??Pertusaria faginea]

USES:    Medicine (Europe?)

    Lindley (1838) records that Variolaria faginea is very bitter, and recommends it as a treatment for intermittent fevers.  Brodo et al. (2001) record that because Pertusaria amara is bitter like quinine it was used to control fevers.
    Pertusaria amara contains picrolichenic acid and sometimes protocetraric acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Pertusaria communis [syn. Pertusaria pertusa]

SEE:    Pertusaria pertusa



Pertusaria corallina [syn. Buellia disciformis, Pertusaria areolata]

USES:    Dye (Scotland)

NOTE:    This lichen does not grow in North America

    Pertusaria corallina was used in Scotland as a red-purple dye for woolens (Uphof 1959).
    Pertusaria species contain a variety of depsides and depsidones, and often xanthones (Brodo et al. 2001).



Pertusaria discoidea [syn. Variolaria discoidea, ??Pertusaria albescens]

USES:    Medicine (Europe?)

NOTE:    This lichen does not grow in North America

    Lindley (1838) records that Pertusaria discoidea is very bitter, and recommends it as a treatment for intermittent fevers.
    Pertusaria species contain a variety of depsides and depsidones, and often xanthones (Brodo et al. 2001).



Pertusaria pertusa [syn. Pertusaria communis]

USES:    Medicine (Europe)

NOTE:    Pertusaria pertusa does not grow in North America.  Reports of Pertusaria pertusa in North America are misidentifications.

    In 15th century Europe Pertusaria pertusa was used as a cure for intermittent fever, and was said to be much more effective on men than on women (Perez-Llano 1944).
    Pertusaria species contain a variety of depsides and depsidones, and often xanthones (Brodo et al. 2001).



Pertusaria pseudocorallina [syn. Pertusaria microstictica]

USES:    Dye (Norway, Sweden)

    Pertusaria pseudocorallina was used in Norway and Sweden as a red-purple dye for woolens (Uphof 1959).
    Pertusaria species contain a variety of depsides and depsidones, and often xanthones (Brodo et al. 2001).



Physcia spp. [“Rosette lichens”]

    A Physcia species was found to have some antibiotic properties (Burkholder et al. 1944).  A crude extract of this lichen inhibited Staphylococcus aureus and Bacillus subtilis.
    Physcia species contain atranorin, and often triterpenes such as zeorin (Brodo et al. 2001).



Physcia pulverulenta [syn. Physconia distorta]

SEE:    Physconia distorta



Physconia distorta [“Frost lichen”; syn. Physcia pulverulenta, Physconia pulverulacea,
Physconia pulverulenta]

USES:    Dye (Europe)

NOTE:    This lichen does not occur in North America, so reports of Physconia distorta in North America are misidentifications.

    In Europe Physconia distorta was used as a yellow dye for woolens (Uphof 1959).
    Physconia species sometimes contain yellow pigments and rarely gyrophoric acid (Brodo et al. 2001).




Platismatia glauca [“Varied rag lichen”, “Ragbag”; syn. Cetraria glauca]

USES: Dye (Europe)

    Platismatia glauca was used in some parts of Europe to dye woolens a chamois colour (Uphof 1959).
    Platismatia glauca contains caperatic acid and atranorin (Brodo et al. 2001).



Pseudocyphellaria aurata [“Green specklebelly”; syn. Sticta aurata]

USES:    Medicine (Malagasy: Madagascar), Dye (Great Britain, Scandinavia)

    The Malagasy of Ambavaniasy in Madagascar used Pseudocyphellaria aurata as a tea to treat indigestion (C. Scheidegger 1998 personal communication, cited in Sharnoff 1997).
    Pseudocyphellaria  aurata was used in Great Britain and Scandinavia to make a dye for woolens (Uphof 1959).
    Pseudocyphellaria aurata contains the yellow pigment calycin and triterpenes (Brodo et al. 2001)



Pseudocyphellaria crocata [“Yellow specklebelly”; syn. Sticta crocata]

USES:    Dye (Europe?)

    Pseudocyphellaria crocata was used as a brown dye for woolens (Uphof 1959).  Brodo et al. (2001) records that it was used for a yellow dye in Europe.
    Pseudocyphellaria crocata contains the yellow pigment calycin, as well as stictic acid and associated compounds (Brodo et al. 2001).



Pseudevernia furfuracea [“Antler lichen”; syn. Evernia furfuracea, Borrera furfuracea,
Parmelia furfuracea, and Lichen furfuracea]

FOLK NAMES:
    Musgo [name also applied to moss] (Alfacar and Víznar: Spain)
    Mousse Chêne or Eichenmoss [name also applied to Evernia prunastri and Evernia
       mesomorpha] (Europe)

USES:    Medicine (Spain, Europe, Egypt), Food (Egypt, Turkey, Copts), Alcohol (Europe), Cosmetics (Europe)

NOTE:    Pseudevernia furfuracea does not grow in North America.  References to Evernia furfuracea in North American ethnographic literature are probably referring to Pseudevernia consocians and Pseudevernia intense.

    Pseudevernia furfuracea is used in traditional medicine in Alfacar and Víznar, Spain.  The lichen is called Musgo (moss) and the thallus is washed and boiled for a considerable time, then the decoction is drunk for respiratory ailments (González-Tejero et al. 1995).  In 15th century Europe Pseudevernia prunastri, Evernia furfuracea, and Parmelia physodes were the main ingredients in a widely known drug called “Lichen quercinus virdes” (Senft 1911, cited in Perez-Llano 1944). Lindley (1838) records that Borrera furfuracea  (I think he is referring to Pseudevernia furfuracea) is an astringent and febrifuge.  Uphof (1959) reports that Pseudevernia furfuracea was used as an old tonic for intestinal weakness. 
    Pseudevernia furfuracea has been found in an Egyptian vase from the 18th Dynasty, in 1700-1600 B. C. (Perez-Llano 1944).  The Egyptians appeared to have many uses for this lichen. Perez-Llano (1944) reported that Pseudevernia furfuracea and Cetraria islandica were both being imported to Egypt from Europe as foreign drugs.  Pseudevernia furfuracea was used by ancient Egyptians to make bread (Uphof 1959; Perez-Llano 1944).  Perez-Llano reports that Evernia prunastri was used as well, and Uphof (1959) reports that the lichen was used as a leavening agent and is still being used for this purpose by Arabs and Copts.  The Egyptians also used Pseudevernia furfuracea to preserve the odor of spices employed in embalming mummies.  It was identified in one mummy 500-800 B. C. (Perez-Llano 1944).
    Pseudevernia furfuracea and Evernia prunastri were also used in Europe as a fermentative agents, and Perez-Llano (1944) recorded that there was still some importation of these lichens in Europe for this purpose.  In the past trade for this lichen was greater, and Perez-Llano (1944) records that Forstal in the 19th century saw several consignments from the Islands of Archipelago for Alexandria.
    Pseudevernia furfuracea is a source of an oleo-resin used in perfume (Uphof 1959).  Pseudevernia furfuracea is called Mousse Chêne or Eichenmoss and the essential oils in it are extracted with volatile solvents (Uphof 1959).  Until a few decades ago there was a company in Granada dedicated to the collection of Pseudevernia furfuracea for this purpose.  This activity still occurs in the neighboring provinces of Sierra de Cazorla and Jaén (González-Tejero et al. 1995).  Uphof (1959) records that the lichen is produced mostly in France, Czechoslovakia, and Herogovina and Piedmont (Italy).  Interestingly, lichens collected from oak branches are supposed to have the best oleo-resin for perfumery (Uphof 1959).  Although Pseudevernia furfuracea is the favorite lichen for use in perfumery, Evernia prunastri and Evernia mesomorpha are also used (Uphof 1959).
    Pseudevernia furfuracea has been found to sometimes absorb enough chlorine from the environment to be harmful (Perez-Llano 1944).  North American species of Pseudevernia contain atranorin and lecanoric acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Punctelia borreri [syn. Lichen borreri Sm., “Parmelia borreria”, Parmelia borreri]

FOLK NAMES:
    Chan wiziye [name also applied to Usnea scabrata] (Dakota)

USES:    Dye (Dakota)

    The Dakota used Punctelia borreria to make a yellow dye for porcupine quills (Gilmore 1911).  The lichen was boiled and the quills were dipped into the decoction.  The lichen was called Chan wiziye.  Gilmore (1911) also reports that Usnea barbata [probably referring to Usnea scabrata] was given the same name and used in the same way.
    Punctelia borreri contains gyrophoric acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Ramalina spp.

FOLK NAMES:
    Chharila [but name generally applied to Parmotrema chinense, Parmotrema perforatum,
       and Everniastrum cirrhatum] (India)

USES:    Dye (Peru, Europe), Perfume (Europe), Food (India), Medicine (India)

    Peruvian people use the thalli of Ramalina spp. is used to produce a yellow dye for traditional textiles (Herrera 1941, cited in Antúnez de Mayolo, 1989).
    Species of Ramalina have been used to make dye and perfume in Europe, and as dye and food stuff in India (Brodo et al. 2001).
    Chharila is the name of a widely used lichen crude drug in India that is generally applied to Parmotrema chinense, Parmotrema perforatum, and Everniastrum cirrhatum.  However, analysis of Chharila by Chandra and Singh (1971) showed that over 50% of the drug was actually other lichens, one of which is Ramalina spp.  For information on Chharila SEEParmotrema chinense.
    Ramalina species contain usnic acid, and often contain b-orcinol depsidones and orcinol or b-orcinol depsides (Brodo et al. 2001).  A species of Ramalina was also found to have some antibiotic properties (Burkholder et al. 1944).  A crude extract of this lichen inhibits Staphylococcus aureus and Bacillus subtilis.



Ramalina bourgeana

FOLK NAMES:
    Flor de piedra [lit. Stoneflower] (Visco, Nijar: both in Spain)

USES:    Medicine (Visco, Nijar: both in Spain)

NOTE:    Not found in North America.

    Ramalina bourgeana is used in Spanish folk medicine in the municipal areas of Viso and Nijar.  The lichen is called Flor de piedra (Stoneflower) and a decoction of the thallus is used as a diuretic for treating renal lithiasis (González-Tejero et al. 1995).  A cup of the decoction is taken daily until the patient is better.
    Ramalina species contain usnic acid, and often contain b-orcinol depsidones and orcinol or b-orcinol depsides (Brodo et al. 2001).



Ramalina calicaris

USES:    Dye (Europe)

    Uphof (1959) records that Ramalina calicaris was powdered and used instead of starch for dyeing perukes and wigs.  It was used in Europe to make a yellow-red dye for woolens (Uphof 1959).
    Ramalina species contain usnic acid, and often contain b-orcinol depsidones and orcinol or b-orcinol depsides (Brodo et al. 2001).



Ramalina cuspidata [syn. Ramalina polymorpha]

SEE:    Ramalina polymorpha



Ramalina farinacea [“Dotted Ramalina”]

USES:    Dye (Europe), Alcohol (Sweden, northern Europe, northern Russia)

    Ramalina farinacea was used in Europe to make a light brown dye for woolens (Uphof 1959).
    Ramalina farinacea  has been used to make brandy in northern Europe and northern Russia.  This process was most commonly used with Cladina rangiferina, but several other lichen species have been used.  SEE: Making Brandy from Lichen under Cladina rangiferina.
    Ramalina farinacea contains usnic acid, may contain hypoprotocetraric acid, and contains either salazinic and/or norstictic acid or just protocetraric acid (Brodo et al. 2001).
   


Ramalina fastigiata

USES:    Alcohol (Sweden, northern Europe, northern Russia)

    Ramalina fastigiata  has been used to make brandy in northern Europe and northern Russia.  This process was most commonly used with Cladina rangiferina, but several other lichen species have been used.  SEE: Making Brandy from Lichen under Cladina rangiferina.
    Ramalina species contain usnic acid, and often contain b-orcinol depsidones and orcinol or b-orcinol depsides (Brodo et al. 2001).



Ramalina fraxinea

USES:    Cosmetics (Europe), Alcohol (Sweden, northern Europe, northern Russia)

    Ramalina fraxinea was used in perfumes and cosmetics in Europe (Uphof 1959).
    Ramalina fraxinea has been used to make brandy in northern Europe and northern Russia.  This process was most commonly used with Cladina rangiferina, but several other lichen species have been used.  SEE: Making Brandy from Lichen under Cladina rangiferina.
    Ramalina species contain usnic acid, and often contain b-orcinol depsidones and orcinol or b-orcinol depsides (Brodo et al. 2001).



Ramalina polymorpha [syn. Ramalina cuspidata??, Ramalina siliquosa, Ramalina breviuscula, Ramalina polymorpha, Ramalina scopulorum var. incrassata]

USES:    Dye (Europe)

    Ramalina siliquosa was used in Europe to make a light brown dye for woolens (Uphof 1959).
    Ramalina species contain usnic acid, and often contain b-orcinol depsidones and orcinol or b-orcinol depsides (Brodo et al. 2001).



Ramalina scopulorum

USES:    Dye (Scotland)

NOTE:     Ramalina scopulorum is not found in North America.  However, Ramalina scropulorum var. incrassata is synonymous with Ramalina polymorpha, which is found in North America.  SEE: Ramalina polymorpha.

    Ramalina scopulorum was used in Scotland to make a yellow-brown to red-brown dye for woolens.  The lichens were boiled in water for one day, and then wool was added to the water and left there until the wool reached the desired colour (Uphof 1959).
    Ramalina species contain usnic acid, and often contain b-orcinol depsidones and orcinol or b-orcinol depsides (Brodo et al. 2001).


 
Rhizocarpon geographicum [“Yellow map lichen”]

USES:    Dye (Scandinavia)

    Rhizocarpon geographicum was used as a source of brown dye in Scandinavia to dye woolens (Uphof 1959).
    Rhizocarpon geographicum contains rhizocarpic acid and sometimes psoromic acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Roccella spp. [“Orchil lichens”]

USES:    Dye (Europe), Medicine (Europe)

    Species of Roccella are commonly used for dyeing cloth (Uphof 1959; Nelson 1951).  Besides forming dye, Roccella lichens also yield a tetra hydric alcohol (erythritol) which forms erythrityl tetranitrate when it is hydrated and can be used medicinally (Nelson 1951).  This substance dilates peripheral arterioles and thus lowers blood pressure.  Because it has low solubility its action is mild and prolonged.
    Most Roccella species contain para-depsides such as erythrin and lecanoric acid, as well as roccellic acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Roccella fuciformis [“Orchil lichen”; syn. “Roccella fuciformia”, Lichen fuciformis]

USES:    Dye (France, England)

    Roccella fuciformis is a source of purple-crimson or red-yellow dye which is used in France and England for dyeing silk, woolens, and carpet yarns (Uphof 1959).  It is also used for staining wood and marble, and as a source of litmus and orchil (Uphof 1959).
    Most Roccella species contain para-depsides such as erythrin and lecanoric acid, as well as roccellic acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Roccella montagnei [“Orchil lichen”]

USES:    Dye (Italy, Germany)

    Roccella montagnei is used as a dye in Italy and Germany (Uphof 1959).
    Most Roccella species contain para-depsides such as erythrin and lecanoric acid, as well as roccellic acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Roccella phycopsis [“Orchil lichen”]

USES:    Dye (Europe)

    Roccella phycopsis is the source of the blue dye used for British Broadcloth (Uphof 1959).  And a tincture of this lichen with alcohol is used in thermometers (Uphof 1959).
    Most Roccella species contain para-depsides such as erythrin and lecanoric acid, as well as roccellic acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Roccella tinctoria [“Orchil lichen”; syn. Lichen roccella]

USES:    Dye (Europe)

    Roccella tinctoria is of commercial importance and is briefly described by Uphof (1959).  This lichen was used as a source of litmus, which was blue in alkali and red in acid.  It was also used for dying silks and woolens as well as wine and liqueur, and it was also used in laundry.  Roccella tinctoria was used before the time of Pliny but its use was forgotten over time.   Its use was rediscovered after the fall of the Roman Empire in about 1300 by Federigo, a Florentine, who became the head of the Oricellari family.  The dye is named after him and called Orseille.  It is also sometimes called Persio.   Orseille is mostly produced from the Netherlands, and the best lichen is obtained on the Canary and Cape Verde Islands.
    Most Roccella species contain para-depsides such as erythrin and lecanoric acid, as well as roccellic acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Scyphophorus cocciferus [syn. Cladonia coccifera??]

NOTE:    The genus Pixidium was created in 1771, and then changed to Scyphophorus [also Scyphiphorus and Scyphophora] in 1803, to accommodate lichens like Lichen pyxidatus [a synonym for Cladonia pyxidata].   Because of this it is likely that Scyphophorus cocciferus is synonymous with Cladonia coccifera.

SEE:    Cladonia coccifera



Scyphophorus pyxidatus [syn. Cladonia pyxidata??]

NOTE:    The genus Pixidium was created in 1771, and then changed to Scyphophorus [also Scyphiphorus and Scyphophora] in 1803, to accommodate lichens like Lichen pyxidatus [a synonym for Cladonia pyxidata].   Because of this it is likely that Scyphophorus pyxidatus is synonymous with Cladonia pyxidata.

SEE:    Cladonia pyxidata



Solorina crocea [“Orange chocolate chip lichen”]

USES:    Dye (Scotland)

    A yellow dye is abundantly formed from the thallus of Solorina crocea and used for colouring woolens in Scotland (Uphof 1959).
    Solorina crocea contains the anthraquinone solorinic acid, and occasionally gyrophorate and gyrophoric acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Stereocaulon himalayense

FOLK NAMES:
    Dhungo ku jhau (Lepchas: India)

USES:    Medicine (Lepchas: India)

NOTE:    Not found in North America

    Stereocaulon himalayense was called dhungo ku jhau by the Lepchas of Sakyong (in Sikkim, India) and was used as medicine as is described by Saklani and Upreti (1992).  The thalli is widely used by the Lepchas for urinary troubles and blisters of the tongue.  To prepare the medicine the thalli are pounded and boiled in water.  About 100mL of this decoction is used twice daily after meals to treat a burning sensation during urination or other urinary problems.  A small quantity is also prescribed for blisters of the tongue.
    Stereocaulon himalayense contains atranorin and lobaric acid (Saklani and Upreti 1992).
All Stereocaulon species contain atranorin, most contain lobaric and stictic acid, and some contain porphyrilic acid or fatty acids (Brodo et al. 2001).



Stereocaulon paschale [“Easter lichen”]

FOLK NAMES:
    Quajuq [name also applied to Parmelia saxatilis, Peltigera aphthosa, and some other flat
       lichens] (Barrens-Keewatin Inuit)
    Jaegel [name also applied to other ‘reindeer lichens’ like Cladina spp., Cetraria spp., and
       Stereocaulon spp.] (Lapplanders)

USES:    Fiber (Barrens-Keewatin Inuit), Animal forage (Saami: northern Scandinavia), Animal Feed (Saami and Scandinavians: northern Scandinavia), Dye (Europe)

    Flat lichens such as Stereocaulon paschale, Parmelia saxatilis, and Peltigera aphthosa were called Quajuq by the Barrens-Keewatin Inuit.  These lichens were used, along with any other handy fill, to stuff caribou skins for rafts to cross inland streams to deep to ford (Wilson 1979). 
    Stereocaulon paschale was also used in some parts of Europe for dyeing woolens ash-green (Uphof 1959).  Uphof (1959) also records the lichen as a source of dextro-mannose and dextro-galactose.
    Stereocaulon paschale grazed by reindeer in Scandinavia.  It is recognized as one of the preferred forages of reindeer by the Saami of northern Scandinavia and they call it Jaegel, but this lichen is also an increaser under grazing pressure.  Stereocaulon paschale, along with Cladina spp., is also collected as fodder for domestic livestock in Scandinavia by the Scandinavians and the Saami.  SEE: Cladina spp. for more information on lichens as forages and animal feed.
    Stereocaulon paschale contains atranorin and lobaric acid (Brodo et al. 2001).  This lichen was also found to have some antibiotic properties (Burkholder et al. 1944).  A crude extract of Stereocaulon paschale inhibits Staphylococcus aureus and Bacillus subtilis.



Sticta spp. [“Moon lichens”, “Crater lichens”; partial syn. Lobaria spp.]

FOLK NAMES:
    P’elems [name also applied to Peltigera spp., Alectoria spp., and mosses] (Southern
       Kwakiult)
    Sts’wakt-aak [name also applied to Lobaria pulmonaria and Lobaria oregana] (Bella
       Coola)
    Didi’dichia [lit. “growing on rocks”] (Makah)

USES:    Fiber (Nitinaht), Medicine (Bella Coola, Makah)

NOTE:    In ethnographic literature Sticta spp. may have been used to refer to Lobaria oregana, Lobaria pulmonaria, and other Lobaria species, as well as species of Sticta.  It could possible also be used to refer to Pseudocyphellaria spp.

    Sticta spp., along with other lichens such as Alectoria and Peltigera and mosses, were called P’elems by the Southern Kwakiult and were used as household material for activities such as lining steaming pits and wiping blood and slime off salmon (washing or scraping the fish ruined the taste) (Turner and Bell 1973).
    The Bella Coola called Sticta spp. Sts’wakt-aak, and used the same name to refer to Lobaria pulmonaria and Lobaria oregana (Turner 1973).  Sticta species, from certain trees only, were used as medicine.  The lichen was boiled and the decoction was taken internally for pains in the stomach and externally as an eyewash and poultice (Smith 1928 cited in Turner 1973).
    Sticta species were called Didi’dichia (growing on rocks) were used as a medicine by the Makah (Densmore 1939, cited in Turner et al. 1983).  The Makah mashed the lichen and made it into a poultice that was used for running sores that were hard to heal.  It was especially for sores on the leg caused by bruises from walking among rocks.
    Most Sticta species do not have any lichen substances in them, but a few have anthraquinones (Brodo et al. 2001).



Sticta amplissima [??syn. Lobaria amplissima]

SEE:    Lobaria amplissima


Sticta aurata [syn. Pseudocyphellaria aurata]

SEE:    Pseudocyphellaria aurata


Sticta crocata [syn. Pseudocyphellaria crocata]

SEE:    Pseudocyphellaria crocata



Sticta glomerulifera [syn. “Sticta glomulerifera”]

FOLK NAMES:
    Wakûn (Menomini)

USES:    Food (Menomini, Ojibwa), Medicine (Menomini), Legend (Menomini)

NOTE:    The lichen names Sticta glomerulifera and Lobaria glomerulifera have both been recorded in published works, but neither names are recorded in the North American Lichen Checklist.  It is likely that Sticta glomerulifera is a synonym for a different Sticta or Lobaria species.

    Smith (1923: pp. 21, 60) records that Sticta glomerulifera was used by the Menomini.  They called the lichen Wakûn (waku’n, wa’kun), plural Wakûnûk (wakûnû’k).  Sticta glomerulifera grew on many trees, but was only picked off hard maple or hemlock trees.  It was gathered in any season and put away dry.  The Menomini used it in soups, and the lichen swelled like Irish moss.  The lichen was quite liked, and valued for its tonic effect on the system and the blood.  Smith records that it was a food, but was probably not that nutritious and was more likely eaten as a medicine for run down systems. 
    According to Menomini legend, lichens such as Sticta glomerulifera were said to be scabs from the head of Mä’näpus.  Mä’näpus placed the scabs were they are to keep his uncles and aunts from starving.  Another version of this legend is that the lichens were scabs from when Mä’näpus burned his buttocks, and they came off as he slid down a slanting rock (Smith 1923: pg 21, 60).
    The Ojibwa also ate Sticta glomerulifera (Uphof 1959), and they probably used it in the same way that they used Sticta amplissima (SEE: Lobaria amplissima).
    Most Sticta species do not have any lichen substances in them, but a few have anthraquinones (Brodo et al. 2001).  Lobaria species frequently contain b-orcinol depsides or orcinol depsides (Brodo et al. 2001).



Sticta pulmonaria [syn. Lobaria pulmonaria]

SEE:    Lobaria pulmonaria



Sticta pulmonacea [??syn. Lobaria pulmonaria]

SEE:    Lobaria pulmonaria



Teloschistes flavicans [“Powdered orange bush lichen”]

USES:    Dye (Germany)

    Teloschistes flavicans was used in Germany to make a gamboge or yellow dye for woolens (Uphof 1959). 
    Teloschistes species contain yellow or orange anthraquinones (Brodo et al. 2001).



Teloschistes parietinus [syn. Xanthoria parietina]

SEE:    Xanthoria parietina



Teloschistes vermicularis

NOTE:    This lichen name may be an error, as there is no record of a lichen Teloschistes vermicularis.  However, it is probable that the lichen being referred to is a species of Teloschistes.

USES:    Dye (Peru)

    According to Antúnez de Mayolo (1989) the weavers of San Pedro de Cajas, Peru use a mixture of two subspecies of Teloschistes vermicularis is used to produce a yellow to orange dye for traditional textiles.
    Teloschistes species contain yellow or orange anthraquinones (Brodo et al. 2001).



Thamnolia vermicularis (Sw.) Schaer. [“Whiteworm lichen”; syn. ??Cladonia vermicularis
(Sw.) Th. Fr.; Lichen vermicularis Sw]

FOLK NAMES:
    Contrayerba blanca [South America]

USES: Medicine (South America)

    According to Lindley (1838) Cladonia vermicularis was called Contrayerba blanca in South America and used as a stomachic.  Although Thamnolia vermicularis has been listed as a synonym to Cladonia vermicularis, it seems unlikely that this is the lichen that Lindley was talking about as Thamnolia vermicularis is an arctic lichen.
    Thamnolia vermicularis contains either thamnolic acid or baeomycesic and squamatic acids (Brodo et al. 2001).



Umbilicaria spp. [“Rock tripes”]

FOLK NAMES:
    Gadna [name also applied to other Umbilicaria-like and Parmelia-like lichens growing on
       rocks and trees] (Saami: northern Scandinavia)

USES:    Food (Huron, Algonkin, Naskapi, Chipewyan, Cree, Inuit, European explorers: boreal North America), Dye (Europe), Animal Forage (Saami: northern Scandinavia)

NOTE:    References to Umbilicaria spp. in ethnographic literature may be referring to Lasallia species as well.

    Various species of Umbilicaria and Lasallia were eaten across boreal North America, generally being boiled in several changes of water to remove some of the bitter lichen compounds and eaten in soup or alone (Brodo et al. 2001).  In 1885 Radisson recorded that the Huron boiled tripe de roche (Umbilicaria spp.) and used it as food (pg. 142; cited in Chamberlain 1901).  In 1911 Blair recorded that the Algonkins ate these lichens, and that most of their families would have starved without them (pg. 102-103; cited in Yarnell 1964).  Brodo et al. (2001) states that the Naskapi, Chipewyan, Cree, and Inuit also ate this lichen.
    Llano (1944a) records that the French Courreur de Bois of boreal America called these lichens tripe de roche because they ate them in periods of emergency.  Brodo et al. (2001) records that stranded pilots in the arctic have eaten these lichens as survival food.  Franklin and his men are often cited as having boiled and eaten much Umbilicaria when they were starving in the arctic (Brodo et al. 2001).  But Franklin’s report also states that the lichen made them very sick, and at the time they were also boiling and eating the leather of their equipment (Llano 1944b).
    As well as being food, many Umbilicaria species were used in Europe to produce a purple dye (Uphof 1959; Brodo et al. 2001).
    Umbilicaria spp. and other Umbilicaria-like and Parmelia-like lichens growing on rocks and trees are called Gadna by the Saami of northern Scandinavia, and they recognize that these lichens are only eaten by reindeer when no other lichens are available.  SEE: Cladina spp. for more information on this.
    Most Umbilicaria contain gyrophoric acid, which makes a purple dye.  They rarely contain norstictic and/or stictic acid (Brodo et al. 2001).  Llano (1944b) states that one of the rock tripes, Umbilicaria pennsylvanica, was found to have a particularly high protein content for a lichen, containing 6.27% protein.  It should be noted, however, that this is actually one of the lowest recorded protein contents for a lichen.



Umbilicaria cylindrica [“Fringed rock tripe”; syn. Gyrophora cylindrica]

FOLK NAMES:
    Tripe de roche [name also applied to some other Umbilicaria spp. and some Lasallia spp.]
       (European explorers: North American arctic)

USES:    Food (European explorers: North American arctic), Dye (Iceland)

    Lindley (1838) records Umbilicaria cylindrica as being one of the tripe de roche that travelers in the arctic regions of America were forced to eat in cases of emergency.  Lindley records that it is “nutritious, but mixed with a disagreeable bitterness, and productive of severe colic and other distressing local complaints.”
    Uphof (1959) records that Umbilicaria cylindrica was used to make a green-brown dye for wool in Iceland.
    Umbilicaria cylindrica contains no lichen substances, but a chemical race in Norway contains norstictic acid (Brodo et al. 2001).  This Umbilicaria is unique in that it does not contain gyrophoric acid, which is a purple pigment (Brodo et al. 2001).



Umbilicaria deusta [“Peppered rock tripe”; syn. Gyrophora deusta, Gyrophora flocculosa]

FOLK NAMES:
    Tousch (Sweden)

USES:    Dye (Sweden)

    Uphof (1959) records Umbilicaria deusta as being used in Sweden as a violet dye for wool.  They also used the lichen to make a violet paint they called Tousch.
    Umbilicaria deusta contains gyrophoric acid, which forms a purple pigment (Brodo et al. 2001).



Umbilicaria esculenta [syn. Gyrophora esculenta]

FOLK NAMES:
    Iwa-take [lit. “Rock mushroom”] (Japan)

USES: Food (Japan)

    Umbilicaria esculenta is called Iwa-take by the Japanese and is described by Kawagoe (1925).  This lichen usually only grows on cliff faces far in the mountains and Iwa-take hunters will risk their lives to gather the lichen.  The hunters will get into baskets that are lowered down the cliff face so that they can pick the lichen.  The market price for Iwa-take is very high, and it is only consumed as a delicacy in soups and salads at high-class dinners.



Umbilicaria mammulata [“Smooth rock tripe”; syn. Gyrophora dillenii]

FOLK NAMES:
    Asine-wakunik (Tête-de-Boule Cree)

USES: Medicine (Tête-de-Boule Cree)

    Raymond (1945) records Umbilicaria mammulata to be a very important female medicine to the Cree (Tête-de-Boule). During a difficult childbirth, the lichen would be boiled in water and then placed on the woman’s genitals.
    Umbilicaria mammulata is one of the largest lichens in the world.  A single thallus can reach 2 feet (63 cm) across.  This lichen contains gyrophoric acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Umbilicaria muehlenbergii [“Plated rock tripe”; syn. Gyrophora muehlenbergii]

USES: Food (Nihitahawak: Saskatchewan), Medicine (Nihitahawak: Saskatchewan)

    The Nihitahawak (Woods Cree) of southeast Saskatchewan added Umbilicaria muehlenbergii to fish broth to make a thick soup (Brodo et al. 2001).  Besides being nutritious, this soup was thought to be good for sick people because it did not upset the stomach.
    Umbilicaria muehlenbergii contains gyrophoric acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Umbilicaria proboscidea [“Netted rock tripe”; syn. Gyrophora proboscidea]

FOLK NAMES:
    Tripe de roche [name also applied to some other Umbilicaria spp. and some Lasallia spp.]
       (European explorers: North American arctic)

USES:    Food (European explorers: North American arctic)

    Lindley (1838) records Umbilicaria proboscidea as being one of the tripe de roche that travelers in the arctic regions of America were forced to eat in cases of emergency.  Lindley records that it is “nutritious, but mixed with a disagreeable bitterness, and productive of severe colic and other distressing local complaints.”
    Umbilicaria proboscidea contains gyrophoric acid, and rarely norstictic acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Umbilicaria pustulata [syn. Lasallia pustulata]

SEE:    Lasallia pustulata



Umbilicaria vellea [“Frosted rock tripe”; syn. Gyrophora velea]

USES: Dye (Sweden)

    Uphof (1959) records that Umbilicaria velea was used in Sweden to dye wool a violet colour.
    Umbilicaria vellea contains gyrophoric acid, which forms a purple pigment (Brodo et al. 2001).



Urceolaria calcarea [??syn. Aspicilia calcarea]

SEE:    Aspicilia calcarea


Urceolaria cinerea [??syn. Aspicilia cinerea]

SEE:    Aspicilia cinerea


Urceolaria scruposa [syn. Diploschistes scruposus]

SEE:    Diploschistes scruposus



Usnea spp.

FOLK NAMES:
    Ipts-aak [lit. “limb moss”, name also applied to other lichens and mosses on tree branches],
       or Suts’wakt (Bella Coola: British Columbia)
    P’u7up [name also applied to other lichens and mosses] (Nitinaht: British Columbia)
    Chharila [but name generally applied to Parmotrema chinense, Parmotrema perforatum,
       and Everniastrum cirrhatum] (India)
    Jaegel [name also applied to other Alectoria-like and Usnea-like beard lichens] (Saami:
       northern Scandinavia)


USES:    Alcohol (Tarahumara: Mexico), Medicine (China, New Zealand, Spain, Africa, Thailand, India, Italy, Bella Coola, Nitinaht), Fiber (Sechelt, Secwepemc, Nuxalk, Bella Coola, Nitinaht, Haida, Gwich’in, Stl’atl’imx and other Interior Salish), Dye (Europe, Coast Salish), Animal forage (Saami: northern Scandinavia)

    There are no records of Usnea spp. being used for food.  However, recently the Tarahumara of northern Mexico have used Usnea as catalysts for making fermented corn beverages (Brodo et al. 2001).  And there are records of Usnea spp. being used as medicine in traditional medicine among First People’s of North and South America, as well as in Europe, Asia, Africa, New Zealand, and in the Pacific Islands.  It is used in contemporary homeopathic medicine as well as in Chinese medicine.
    Usnea spp. has been used by Chinese herbalists for more than 3000 years (Hale 1983; Cabrera 1996; Tilford 1997).  Species of Usnea are also used in traditional medicine in New Zealand (Sharnoff 1997).  Usnea spp. is used to treat respitory ailments in traditional medicine in Spain (Villar et al. 1990, cited in González-Tejero et al 1995).  According to R. J. Hill (1998 personal communication, cited in Sharnoff 1997) Usnea sp. was used as an ingredient in an apparently effective herbal tea given by African guide to relieve altitude sickness on Mt. Kilimonjaro, Africa.  And according to P. Wosleley (1998 personal communication, cited in Sharnoff 1997) the Karen of Doi Inthanon (a national park) in Chiang Mai Province, Thailand, used Usnea spp. in a bath for women following the birth of a child, to aid parturition and to prevent infection.
    Chharila is the name of a widely used lichen crude drug in India that is generally applied to Parmotrema chinense, Parmotrema perforatum, and Everniastrum cirrhatum.  However, analysis of Chharila by Chandra and Singh (1971) showed that over 50% of the drug was actually other lichens, one of which is Usnea spp.  For information on Chharila SEEParmotrema chinense.
    R. Zorer (1998 personal communication, cited in Sharnoff 1997) reports that Usnea spp. was used by shepherds in Brocon Pass in Trentino, Italy.  They put it in their shoes to prevent and/or treat blisters.  Usnea spp., along with Alectoria sarmentosa, was called Suts’wakt or Ipts-aak by the Bella Coola of British Columbia (Turner 1973).  If it was found growing on alder it was used to poultice sores and boils (Smith 1928, cited in Turner 1973).  These same lichens (Usnea spp. and Alectoria sarmentosa) were called p’u7up by the Nitinaht and used for their absorbent (and probably medicinal) qualities.  They were used for dressing wounds, baby diapers, and sanitary napkins, as well as for wiping salmon.  For bandaging wounds Nitinaht specifically identified Usnea spp. from other epiphytic lichens and mosses by the presence of a central cord in the thallus, which is a diagnostic character of Usnea spp. (Turner 1973).
    Usnea spp. is also being used in contemporary western homeopathic medicine (Sharnoff, 1997).  The lichen compound usnic acid (in extracts of Usnea species, as well as some other lichens) has been used recently in antibiotic salves, deodorants, and herbal tinctures (Sharnoff 1997).  Herb Advisor (www.herbaladvisor.com) is currently (December 2002) selling a product called Spilanthes + Usnea Compound as an anti-fungal remedy (one oz. bottle costs US$13.20).  Gaia Herbs, a US company started in 1987, is currently (December 2002) selling a product called Supreme Usnea/Uva Ursi as an antibiotic for the urinary tract (one oz. bottle costs US$16.07).  This medicine is a mixture of Usnea spp., Arctostaphylos uva ursi leaves, Chimaphila umbellata leaves, and Echinacea spp.  Gaia Herbs claim that this medicine has natural antibiotic and antibacterial compounds which directly target the urinary system, and they recommend it for the treatment of bladder infections, kidney infections, urinary tract infections, cystitis, nephritis, chronic urinary irritation, and chronic bladder irritation.  The medicine is used by adding 40-60 drops of it to a small amount of warm water and taking it every 1 to 2 hours until symptoms of urinary infections disappear (maximum of 5 to 7 days only).  Gaia Herbs also includes Usnea spp., along with a bunch of other things, in their Ginseng Virility Herbal Elixir (US$54.16 for a eight oz. bottle).  They say it is a “male revitalizing tonic” that is “useful for athletes during workout phase, for energy enhancement, and increased physical endurance. This compound may provide steroid-like activity, thus its value in athletic training”.
    The Haida used Usnea spp. and Alectoria sarmentosa to strain hot pitch to remove impurities before it was used as medicine (Turner 1998).  It may have just been the fibrous properties of the lichen that were being used, or perhaps the lichen could have imparted some medicinal properties to the pitch.  These same lichens were used by the Sechelt for baby diapers and to make a fire smoke; by the Haida as a bedding when camping; and by the Secwepemc, Nuxalk, and Bella Coola as false whiskers and artificial hair for decorating dance masks and especially for children masquerading (Turner 1973; Turner 1998).  First People’s of British Columbia’s west coast also used Usnea spp. and Alectoria sarmentosa to wipe slime off fish (washing them wrecked the taste) and to protect food in earthen pits (Turner 1998).  The Gwich’in of the Fort Yukon Region, Alaska occasionally collect Usnea spp. from spruce trees, dry it, and use it as tinder (Holloway and Alexander 1990).
    Usnea spp., Alectoria sarmentosa, and Bryoria spp. were used by the Stl’atl’imx and other Interior Salish peoples for weaving clothing such as ponchos and footwear (Turner 1998).  The lichen was usually interwoven with stronger materials such as silverberry bark.  These garments were not considered high quality, and were usually worn by those who couldn’t obtain skins for clothing.
    Usnea may have been used by Coast Salish on Vancouver Island and the mainland to make a dark green dye (Ravenhill 1938, cited in Turner and Bell 1971; Turner 1998).  Uphof (1959) records Usnea spp. as a source of an orange-red dye for woolens, and of a Cyprus Powder (a toiled powder) during the 7th century.
    Usnea spp. and other Alectoria-like and Usnea-like beard lichens are called Lappo by the Saami of northern Scandinavia.  The Saami recognize that these lichens are quite liked by reindeer but do not form a large part of their diet.   SEE: Cladina spp. for more information on this.
    All Usnea species contain usnic acid and can also contain a variety of other compounds (Brodo et al. 2001).



Usnea barbata

NOTE:    This lichen does not occur in North America.  Reports of Usnea barbata in North America are misidentifications.  Usnea barbata has been called synonymous with the North American species Usnea xanthopoga and Usnea filipendula.  But according to McCune (2000), the Usnea barbata specimens described in North America are actually Usnea scabrata.

USES:    Medicine (Ancient Greece, Medieval Europe, Spain, Malay Peninsula), Dye (Europe?, Peru)

    Hypocrites prescribed Usnea barbata for uterine ailments sometime around 400 B. C. (Perez-Llano 1944).  In 15th century Europe the signature doctrine had this lichen being used as a medicine to strengthen hair (Perez-Llano 1944). Usnea barbata is currently used as a secant and antiseptic in traditional medicine in Abejar, which is in Soria, Spain (Bustinza and Caballero 1948; cited in González-Tejero et al 1995).  And the natives of the Malay Peninsula still use it for colds and strengthening after confinement (Perez-Llano 1944).
    Peruvian people used the thalli of Usnea barbata to produce a dark blue dye for traditional textiles.  Blue dyes were rare in Peruvian dye plants  (Lira 1940, cited in Antúnez de Mayolo, 1989).  But according to Uphof (1959) Usnea barbata was used as a source of orange-red dye for staining woolens (probably in Europe).  Gilmore (1911) records that the Dakota used Usnea barbata for a yellow dye, but this was probably actually Usnea scabrataSEE: Usnea scabrata.
    Usnea barbata, along with some other Usnea species, was the source of a Cyprus Powder (a toiled powder) during the 7th century (Uphof 1959).
    It is interesting that there are three separate claims of this lichen being used as a blue, a red, and a yellow dye.  It is possible for the same lichen to produce more than one colour depending on the mordants and process used, or on the chemical race of the lichen, but it is more likely that some of the authors are mistaken in their identification of the lichen or the colour that it produced. Antúnez de Mayolo (1989) is the only above mentioned author to actually test the lichen, and he found it to produce blue dye.  However, I have not found any record of Usnea barbata occurring in the New World.



Usnea californica [partial syn. Usnea ceratina]

NOTE:    Usnea californica is a name sometimes applied to distinct California populations of the species Usnea ceratina.

SEE:    Usnea ceratina



Usnea ceratina [“Warty beard lichen”; partial syn. Usnea californica]

NOTE:    Populations of Usnea ceratina in California are morphologically distinct and sometimes called Usnea californica]

FOLK NAMES:   
    Kôchih [alt. Qoci] (Southwestern Pomo: California)

USES:    Fiber (Southwestern Pomo: California)
 
    The Southwestern Pomo of California used the California populations of Usnea ceratina and called it Kôchih.  This lichen was used as diapers for babies, or “toilet chips” (Gifford 1967).
    Usnea ceratina contains diffractaic acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Usnea dasypoga [syn. Usnea filipendula]

SEE:    Usnea filipendula



Usnea densirostra [previously misidentified as Usnea hieronymi]

NOTE:    This may not be a current name.  There is no record of this lichen in North America.

FOLK NAMES:    Yerba de la Piedra [lit. “Stone grass”] (Uruguay)

USES:    Medicine (Uruguay)

    Usnea densirostra (previously misidentified as Usnea hieronymi) is called Yerba de la Piedra (Stone grass) in Uruguay (Osorio 1982).  This lichen is used medicinally.



Usnea diffracta

NOTE:    This may not be a current name.  There is no record of this lichen in North America.

FOLK NAMES
    Lao-tzu's beard, Pine gauze, or Female gauze (China)

USES:    Medicine (China, Korea, Japan)

    According to M. Strickmann (unpublished notes: pg. 2; cited in Sharnoff 1997), in China Usnea diffracta was used medicinally and called “Lao-tzu's beard”, “Pine gauze”, or “Female gauze”.  This lichen was described in the earliest herbal  in 500 AD.  It was picked in 5th lunar month and dried in the shade. It was used to stop sweating, dizziness, cold, pain, or phlegm. It was also said to benefit the urinary tract and stop swelling in female genitalia.  According to But et al. (1997) Usnea diffracta is still used in China as a medicine.  A decoction of the lichen is drank to treat pulmonary tuberculosis and chronic bronchitis.  A decoction of the lichen, or the powdered lichen, is also applied topically to treat infectious wounds.  But et al. (1997) also reports that in Korea and Japan a decoction of Usnea diffracta to treat scrofula and swelling, and some other conditions.
    Usnic acid and diffractaic acid (a derivative of usnic acid) isolated from Usnea diffracta have both been demonstrated to be analgesic when tested on mice (Okuyama et al. 1995).



Usnea filipendula [“Fishbone beard lichen”; syn. Usnea dasypoga, has been misidentified in
North America as Usnea plicata]

USES:    Medicine (Sakhalin: Russia, Java)

    Usnea filipendula has been used as a powder to treat wounds on the island of Sakhalin in the Russian far east (Brodo et al. 2001).  Uphof (1959) records that this lichen is used as a medicine by the natives of Java.
    Usnea filipendula contains salazinic acid (Brodo et al. 2001).  This lichen has tested positive for antibacterial activity (Brodo et al. 2001).



Usnea florida

USES:    Dye (Europe), Alcohol (Sweden, northern Europe, northern Russia)

    Usnea florida was used in Europe to make a green-yellow or red-brown dye for woolens (Uphof 1959).
    Usnea florida has been used to make brandy in northern Europe and northern Russia.  This process was most commonly used with Cladina rangiferina, but several other lichen species have been used.  SEE: Making Brandy from Lichen under Cladina rangiferina.



Usnea hieronymi

NOTE:    Usnea hieronymi specimens identified as being used medicinally in Uruguay were actually Usnea densirostra.

SEE:    Usnea densirostra



Usnea hirta [“Bristly beard lichen”; syn. Usnea variolosa]

USES:    Dye (Navajo: New Mexico)

    Usnea hirta was used to produce a flesh-colour dye by the Navajo of New Mexico (R. Suminski 1994 personal communication, cited in Sharnoff 1997, species determined by J. Marsh).
    Usnea hirta contains usnic acid, and sometimes some fatty acids and diffractaic acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Usnea lacunosa

NOTE:    This may not be a current name.  There is no record of this lichen in North America.

USES:    Fiber (Yuki, Pomo, and Yokia: California)

    Chestnut (1902) records that Usnea lacunosa was referred to as moss by First People’s (Yuki, Pomo, and/or Yokia) of Medino County, California, and it was used as bedding.



Usnea longissima [“Methuselah’s beard lichen”]

FOLK NAMES:   
    Syara    (Bhotia, Garhwali: India)
    P’u7up [Name also applies to other lichens and mosses on trees] (Nitinaht: British Columbia)

USES:    Fiber (west coast North America, Bhotia and Garhwali: India), Medicine (Nitinaht: British Columbia, Baiga: India, China, Europe), Decoration (Europe)

    Usnea longissima (as well as some related species) was used in the coniferous rainforests on the west coast of North America as material for diapers, feminine hygiene products, bedding, and for straining medicine (Turner et al. 1983; Brodo et al. 2001).  Usnea longissima is called Syara by the Bhotia and Garhwali of the Garhwal Himalayans in India (Lal and Upreti 1995).  They use this lichen as a stuffing for pillows and cushions, but some people think that it this causes asthma and prefer not to use it.  Usnea longissima was probably the original tinsel on Christmas trees in Northern Europe (Brodo et al. 2001).
    Usnea longissima was used by the Nitinaht to dress wounds (Turner et al. 1983).  The lichen would be wrapped around the wound and left a while.  The Baiga of Madhya Pradesh (India) also use Usnea longissima medicinally.  The lichen is mixed with some other ingredients and used to treat bone fractures (Lal and Upreti 1995). And according to the signature doctrine Usnea longissima was used in medieval Europe to strengthen hair (Brodo et al. 2001).
    Early Chinese herbalists perscribed Usnea longissima to be taken orally as an expectorant (Brodo et al. 2001; Cabrera 1996; Tilford 1997) and to be applied topically in powder form to treat surface infections or external ulcers (Cabrera 1996; Tilford 1997). It is still in use today as a tincture as an expectorant (Brodo et al. 2001) and to treat tuberculosis lymphedenitis (Cabrera, 1996; Hobbs, 1986).  Brodo et al. (2001) reports that Usnea longissima is used in India as an expectorant as well.
    Usnea longissima contains various b-orcinol depsides including evernic, barbatic, or diffractaic acids (Brodo et al. 2001).  Chemical tests on Usnea longissima  in India have shown that there it contains usnic and barbatic acid (Lal and Upreti 1995).  Usnea longissima is one of the most sensitive lichens to air pollution, and likes to grow in old growth forests.  Because of this it is rapidly becoming endangered (Brodo et al. 2001).



Usnea plicata

NOTE:    This lichen does not occur in North America.  Reports of Usnea plicata in North America are misidentifications and are probably referring to Usnea filipendula (Esslinger 1997).

USES:    Medicine (Europe), Dye (Europe)

    Lindley (1838) records that Usnea plicata is a remedy for whooping-cough, and the Pharmacopoeia Universalis of 1846 lists medicinal uses for Usnea plicata (Saklani and Upreti 1992).  As well, Usnea plicata was used in Europe as a green or yellow dye for woolens (Uphof 1959).



Usnea scabrata [may be syn. to Usnea barbata in North America]

NOTE:    Reports of Usnea barbata in North American are misidentifications, and are probably actually referring to Usnea scabrata (McCune 2000).

FOLK NAMES:
    Chan wiziye (Dakota)

USES:    Dye (Dakota)

    Gilmore (1911) records that the Dakota called Usnea barbata Chan wiziye.  This lichen was used to make yellow dye for porcupine quills.  To dye the quills, the lichens were boiled and the quills were dipped into the decoction.  Parmelia borreria was also given the same name and used in the same way.



Variolaria spp. [syn. Pertusaria spp.]

SEE:    Pertusaria spp.


Variolaria discoidea [syn. Pertusaria discoidea]

SEE:    Pertusaria discoidea


Variolaria faginea [??syn. Pertusaria amara]

SEE:    Pertusaria amara


Variolaria orcina [??syn. Pertusaria spp.]

SEE:    Pertusaria spp.



Vulpicida canadensis [“Brown-eyed sunshine lichen”; partial syn. Cetraria juniperina]

USES:    Dye (Gitksan)

    Vulpicida canadensis was used by the Gitksan around Kitwanga, British Columbia for dying mountain goat wool (use reported by Harlan Smith in 1926 under the name Cetraria juniperina; cited in Sharnoff 1997).
    The Vulpicida species contain pinastric, vulpinic, and usnic acid.  All three acids are yellow (Brodo et al. 2001).


Vulpicida pinastri [“Powdered sunshine lichen”; syn. Cetraria pinastri, Cetraria caperata]

USES: Dye (Europe), Poison (Europe)

    Vulpicida pinastri, along with another species of Vulpicida (referred to as the invalid taxon Cetraria juniperina), were both used in some parts of Europe to dye wool a green colour (Uphof 1959).  These same two species were also used to poison wolves by mixing the lichens with ground glass and putting them in wolf bait (Perez-Llano 1944).  Letharia vulpina was used as wolf poison in the same manner.   
    The Vulpicida species contain pinastric, vulpinic, and usnic acid.  All three acids are yellow, both pinastric and vulpinic acid are toxic to animals, and usnic acid is an antibiotic (Brodo et al. 2001; Llano 1944b).



Xanthoparmelia camtschadalis (Ach.) Hale [“Rock shield lichen”; ??syn. Parmelia
camtschadalis]

USES:    Dye (India)

    Xanthoparmelia camtschadalis was a source of a pale rose dye used in India to print and perfume calico cloth (Uphof 1959).
    Xanthoparmelia species contain usnic acid and a wide variety of medullary compounds especially b-orcinol depsidones such as salazinic, norstictic, and stictic acids, and depsides such as barbatic and diffractaic acids (Brodo et al. 2001).



Xanthoparmelia chlorochroa [“Tumbleweed shield lichen”; syn. Parmelia chlorochroa]

USES:    Dye (Navajo)

    Xanthoparmelia chlorochroa is used by Ramah Navajo weavers to make a warm brown dye (J. Henio 1995 personal communication; cited in Sharnoff 1997). The Ramah Navajo Weavers Association raises sheep, spins the wool and dyes it using vegetal dyes to make their weavings.  To produce the dye, the lichen is boiled in water over an open flame. R. Suminski (1994 personal communication, cited in Sharnoff 1997) also says that Xanthoparmelia species are used by the Navajo of New Mexico to make a beige dye.
    Xanthoparmelia chlorochroa communities have been known to reach 126 kg/ha in dry grasslands in Montana (MacCracken et al. 1983).  But it should be noted that Xanthoparmelia chlorochroa could easily be over harvested, as it only grows about 1 millimeter each year (MacCracken et al. 1983).  This lichen contains salazinic acid and traces of norstictic acid (Brodo et al. 2001).



Xanthoparmelia conspersa [“Peppered rock shield”; syn. Parmelia conspersa]

USES:    Medicine (Africa), Dye (Europe)

    Xanthoparmelia conspersa has been used in southeastern and eastern Africa to treat snake bite and venereal disease (Brodo et al. 2001).  And Xanthoparmelia conspersa was used in England to dye woolens red-brown (Uphof 1959).
    Xanthoparmelia conspersa contains usnic, norstictic, and stictic acid (Brodo et al. 2001). This lichen was also found to have some antibiotic properties (Burkholder et al. 1944).  A crude extract of Xanthoparmelia conspersa inhibits Bacillus subtilis.



Xanthoria candelaria [“Shrubby sunburst lichen”]

USES:    Dye (Sweden)

    Xanthoria candelaria is used in Sweden to make a yellow dye for woolens (Uphof 1959).
    Xanthoria species contain various anthraquinone pigments, and especially parietin (Brodo et al. 2001).



Xanthoria parientina [“Maritime sunburst lichen”, “Wall lichen”; syn. Teloschistes parientinus, Physcia parientina, Lichen parietinus]

FOLK NAMES:
    Rompepiedra [lit. Stonebreaker], or Flor de piedra [lit. Stoneflower] (Spain)
    Gold moss or Gold lichen (England)

USES:    Medicine (Campohermoso, Barranquete, Cueva de los Medinas, Joya, Pozo de los Frailes,
Puebloblanco, Fernan Pérez, Joya, Fuente del Escribano, San Isidro Jiménez: all in Spain), Decoration (England), Dye (England, Sweden)

    In 15th century Europe the signature theory of medicine was popular.  Because of its yellow-orange colour Xanthoria parietina was popular as a cure for jaundice (Perez-Llano 1944).  In 1846 the Pharmacopoeia Universalis still listed several medicinal uses for Xanthoria parietina (Saklani and Upreti 1992).
    Xanthoria parientina is still used in traditional medicine in Spain and its uses are described by González-Tejero et al (1995).  It is called Rompepiedra (stonebreaker) or Flor de piedra (stoneflower).  A decoction of the thallus in wine was used to treat menstrual complaints (in Campohermoso).  A decoction in water was used as an antiodontalgic (in Joya and Fernan Pérez) and to treat kidney disorders (in Joya, Barranquete, Cueva de los Medinas, Pozo de los Frailes, and Puebloblanco).  In Fuente del Escribano it is used as an analgesic for several pains.  And in San Isidro Jiménez it is an ingredient in a cough syrup (along with the fruits of Ceratonia siliqua and Fiscus carica; the flowers and leaves of Origanum vulgare; the pericarp of the fruit of Prunus amygdalus; the leaves of Olea europaea; and lots of sugar or honey).
    Xanthoria parietina is also used for well-dressing in England, which is described by Vickery (1975).  Well-dressing is a traditional ritual started in the early 19th century and until recently restricted to the White Peak area of Derbyshire.  In this ritual plant materials are used to create miniature scenes (often religious) in large trays (up to 3.7 m in length).  Then, during a festival in the summer, the wells in town are “dressed” by leaning these trays against them.  As these trays are left up for several weeks, durable plant materials must be used.  Xanthoria parietina, along with Parmelia saxatilis, are often used.
    Xanthoria parietina was also used in England and Scotland to make a yellow dye for woolens and for painting Easter eggs (Uphof 1959).
    This lichen is restricted to coastal habitats (Brodo et al. 2001).  Xanthoria parietina can absorb enough beryllium from its environment to harmful to animals (Perez-Llano 1944).  Xanthoria species contain various anthraquinone pigments, and especially parietin (Brodo et al. 2001).



Unidentified lichens, black and yellow

USES:    Paint (Haisla and other coastal peoples: British Columbia)

    The Haisla and other coastal peoples used certain black and yellow lichens on rocks and trees for paint.  They were powdered and mixed with salmon eggs and used to paint spoons, bowls, and totem poles (Turner 1998).



Unidentified lichen, earth flower

FOLK NAMES:
    Jievut hiawsik [lit. “Earth flower”] (Pima: California)

USES:    Charm (Pima), Narcotic (Pima), Medicine (Pima)

    Curtin (1949) describes the use of a saxicolous (grows on rocks) lichen by First People’s in California.  The Pima [O’odham] called this lichen Jievut hiawsik [earth flower].  The Papago name for this lichen also translates to “Earth flower”, and the Maricopa knew of the lichen as well.  Men gather this lichen and carry it around in their pockets to bring luck catching game.  But it is also believed that if you carry the lichen in your pocket too much it will make you sick.  Because of this the Maricopa won’t carry it around at all.
    Curtin’s informant informed her that Jievut hiawsik has more religious meaning than any other plant.  It is smoked mixed with tobacco at the summer dances and has a distinctive aroma.  It is supposed to be like marijuana and “make[s] young men crazy”.  The lichen is also ground into a powder and sprinkled on sores or cuts (but not bound, as this would cause blisters).  It was used by the informant to heal a rattlesnake bite.  It was applied over several days and worked effectively.
The lichen has a strong odor and is the colour of gray ashes.  Another informant described the lichen as “reddish and white and different colours, and smells like violets”.  The lichen grows on rocks and dead wood in some areas in the hills. 



Unidentified lichens, general lichens in Europe

USES:    Food (Europe)

    Lichen starch is used to make chocolates, pastries, and confectionaries in Europe.  This is especially common in France (Llano 1944b).



Unidentified lichens, growing on white pine

USES:    Food (Ojibwa)

    Stowe (1940; cited in Arnason et al. 1981) reports that the Ojibwa ate lichen (possibly a moss) growing on white pine.  They dried it, boiled it, and then used it in fish or meat broth.  This was probably referring to Lobaria amplissima.



Unidentified lichen, New Zealand

FOLK NAMES:
    Kohukohu (Maori: New Zealand)

USES:    Medicine (Maori: New Zealand)

    Brooker and Cooper (1962) report that the Maori used a lichen as a medicine.  They dried and reduced it to a powder, and then applied it to cutaneous eruptions.  This lichen was called Kohukohu, but this may also have been referring to a type of moss.



Unidentified lichens, orange and yellow crustose

FOLK NAMES:
    “Lizard semen” [translation] (Northern Paiute: Nevada)

USES:    Medicine (Northern Paiute: Nevada)

    According to Catherine Fowler (1996 personal communication, cited in Sharnoff 1997) (1996) the orange and yellow crustose lichens were very important medicines of the Northern Paiute of western Nevada.  These lichens were used as antibiotics and fungicides. The Northern Paiute name translates as “lizard semen” and comes from the little pushups that western fence lizards do on rocks.



Unidentified lichen, pyrenocarpous

FOLK NAMES:
    Baduhu-tsinã [lit. “Deer snuff”] (Denís: Brazil)

USES:    Snuff (Denís: Brazil)

    Prance (1972) reports on a pyrenocarpous lichen used by the Denís of Amazonian Brazil.  The lichen is called Baduhu-tsinã and is used as a snuff.  The yellow powder of the medulla on the surface of the lichen is collected from the tree trunks where it grows.  The powder is then sniffed in small quantities.  The Denís use it frequently and it induces sneezing, but it does not appear to have a narcotic effect.  A pyrenocarpous lichen is a lichen with perithecia, which are flask shaped ascocarps (the fruiting body of ascomycete fungi).



Unidentified lichens, rock and tree lichens

FOLK NAMES:
    Gustaot one’ta’ (Iroquois)

USES:    Food (Iroquois)

    The Iroquois rarely ate lichens, but in an emergency they would.  The Iroquois called lichens Gustaot one’ta’ and rarely ate them except in an emergency (Parker 1910, cited in Arnason et al. 1981). The lichens were scraped from the tree or rock and washed in ashes and water to remove bitterness before cooking.  They were then boiled in grease.



Unidentified lichens, southern Mexico

USES:    Medicine (Northern Lacandone: Mexico)

    Sharnoff (1997) writes that the Northern Lacandone of Southern Mexico invoked lichens in the magical healing of skin eruptions.  She cites unpublished notes of C. Ratsch on “Lichens in the Northern Lacandone Culture”.



Unidentified lichen, “white moss”

FOLK NAMES:
    Uriugaq (Barrens-Keewatin Inuit)

    An unidentified “type of white moss” found at Baker Lake was called Uriugaq by the Barrens-Keewatin Inuit (Wilson 1979).



Unidentified lichen, yellow saxicolous

USES:    Medicine (Hopi)

    Beaglehole and Beaglehole (1935) refer to a yellow rock fungus that was used in Hopi medicine.  They report that a First Mesa medicine woman (Hopi) used a “yellow rock fungus” as a cure.  It was applied to the cheeks to reduce swelling for a toothache and for swelling in the mouth.



Lichens A-M

References

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