Bishop Pine

The older Bishop Pines have some great silhouettes.  All gnarly and weather beaten, often with a lot of snags where the over mature trees have entered into decline, and festooned with lichens enabled by all the fog.  In fact I read yesterday that many of the forests in this area gain a significant proportion of summer moisture from condensed fog dripping beneath the trees, or in some instances, absorbed directly from the air.  Near the house, and further down the valley towards the town, the pines can be quite tall and massive, but there is one nearby hill where all the vegetation is particularly contorted and stunted.  It is clearly older growth, not the vigorous young trees found in the areas burnt by the Vision Fire.  And yet quite short.  It seems to be a matter of soil, with the hillside being particularly dry and rocky looking, but surprisingly distinct from anything else immediately nearby, which is mostly pretty lush.

Bishop Pine Silhouette, charcoal on paper, Peter McLean, 2011

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