Bryophytes (Mosses, Liverworts, and Hornworts) •

Alternateleaf Archidium Moss

(Archidium alternifolium)



This small moss grows in dark or mid-green patches or loose mats with stems to 2 cm long, often formed of more or less prostrate, non-fertile shoots with short, widely spaced leaves. Unusually for a moss, the leaves do not increase in size towards the top of the shoots. The leaves are erect or held away from the stem when moist, and are narrowly triangular; the nerve ends in the tip. The occasional, short, fertile shoots have crowded leaves with much larger (2 mm long) leaves surrounding the capsule (see top right photograph) that are more spearhead-shaped, and have a longer, tapering tip. The hidden, spherical capsule is easily overlooked, and doesnot have a separate lid.

Taxonomic tree:

Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Bryophyta
Class: Bryopsida
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