Thick leathery leaves. Wondered if it was ginseng
no, not ginseng but still an interesting plant. This is Galax, Galax aphylla, a native plant related to the Oconee Bell, but it has spikes of small white flowers. Rather common in the SC mountains.
There is a twig covered with a lichen in the image as well, unrelated to the leathery leaved plant.
Dr. Steven Hill, Botanist, SCNPS