Image By Jason Hollinger (Lace Lichen Uploaded by Amada44) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
On July 15, 2015, Governor Jerry Brown signed the bill designating lace lichen, Ramalina menziesii, the California State Lichen.
The law takes effect January 1, 2016, making California the first state to recognize a lichen as a state symbol. Lace lichen joins the California poppy as the state flower and the grizzly bear as the state animal.
The California Lichen Society promotes the appreciation, conservation, and study of California lichens, and has posted a beautiful article about our new state lichen on their website: http://californialichens.org/state-lichen/
CALS sees this designation as an important step in increasing public awareness of the significant roles that lichens play in our natural environment. Calling attention to lichens by recognizing one of them as the California State Lichen creates an opportunity for us to learn about and celebrate the things that make California special.