hills worn smooth by time
limestone mounds covered in green
make mossy marvels
I’ve grown to love the subtle beauty of the Ozark Mountains. The Ozarks are the exposed remains of an ancient mountain range hundreds of millions of years old. They were birthed by seismic upheaval and shaped by time and vast inland seas during prehistoric times. Additionally, vast tracks of land sit on what is called the Ozark Plateau, which are limestone plateaus eroded into hills, valleys, and bluffs by water, but are not true mountains.
Many of these exposed limestone rocks are covered in moss, fungi, and lichen. Moss are simple and ancient plants (with stems and roots) that have remained the same for millions of years. Lichens are two organisms – a fungus and an algae – living together in a symbiotic relationship. They survive by absorbing nutrients from their host which can be trees, plants, or rocks. In fact, the rocks in the photo above are covered in moss with some lichen too. It’s a mixed-up menagerie in these Ozark hills!