Thallus: fruticose, shrubby, up to 3(-6) cm long; branching: palmately or irregularly branched, growing from a narrow holdfast; branches: solid, main branches flat to irregularly uneven, radially arranged chondroid strands present near the base, 3-5(-15) mm wide; surface: greenish yellow, smooth, shiny; soredia: present, capitate, parietal, often erupting downward; pseudocyphellae: rare, sparse, orbicular, flat or +raised; cortex: thin; chondroid strands: discontinuous, smooth; Apothecia: not seen for Mexican specimens; Pycnidia: not observed; Spot tests: cortex K-, C-, KC+ yellow, P-; medulla K-, C-, KC-, P-; Secondary metabolites: cortex with usnic acid (major); medulla with divaricatic acid (major).; Substrate and ecology: on branches; World distribution: widespread in the Mediterranean regions of Europe and in western Europe north to Norway as well as southwestern North America; Sonoran distribution: common in Baja California, Baja California Sur and southern California.; Notes: Ramalina canariensis might be confused with R. lacera, that differs in having monophyllous main laciniae with marginal secondary branches, reticulately ridged branches without chondroid strands, laminal and marginal soralia and producing bourgeanic acid. Ramalina canariensis also has a two-layered cortex, while R. lacera has a more simple, single-layered cortex and lacks supportive tissue.
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