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Show Me Your ID

I need help identifying two things I found in the garden today.  The first
is a larva, presumably of a beetle (it has the clearly demarcated back);
the color is an almost translucent pinkish-beige, with a column of
identical black specks running opposite each other along each side of the
back, and another column along each side of the body.  The shape of the
specks and their placement lent a geometric look to the design.  Un-curled,
it would probably have been about an inch long.  I could not tell if it had
legs, like a grub, or not, but the posture was that of a grub, with the
head tucked in.  It was found between a hosta and primroses.  I thought I
would let it live until I found out if it was a pest or not.

The second mystery is a plant or fungus (is fungus a plant?).  It is
curving up from the ground in two 'spikes' (from the direction of growth,
they appear to arise from the same source; they are about two inches
apart), each the diameter and shape of a common earthworm.  The color
appears to be dark purple, but it is hard to tell as the spikes are covered
with a pinkish, powdery-looking bloom.  This is growing between a hosta and
a rock, in an area where the soil is a little more acid than the rest of
the garden.  Just feature a couple of purple, powdered earthworms curving
up out of the soil (noses skyward) to a height of about two inches (perhaps
three if stretched straight) and you will have the picture.

The larva looks similar to an army worm, but the color is all wrong, and I
can find nothing meeting the description of the other item.

Sheila Smith
Niles, MI  USA, Z 5/6

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