Ambiguous Thread Moss - Ditrichum ambiguum
Ambiguous Ditrichum Moss
Plants: Acrocarpous, growing in open to crowded clumps of erect shoots, green, or green with yellow tones, turning somewhat brownish with yellow tones over time, not shiny. Stems single or occasionally branched a little, 7-20 mm in height, possessing a central strand; rhizoids occurring at the bottom of the stem, somewhat red (FNA 2007).
Leaves: Slightly curled, twisted, or wavy when dry, generally spreading up to ca 45 degrees, lance-shaped and sometimes very slender with a longitudinal groove from the sunken costa, the apex slender and dull to obtuse; margins widely curved back and downward in the proximal half, saw-toothed in the upper half, sometimes smooth at the leaf tip; costa extending to the leaf tip (FNA 2007).
Leaf Cells: Lamina with several bi-stratose cells dispersed in the upper half, the cells with thick walls; upper laminal cells square or nearly so to short and quadrangular, becoming both wider and longer proximally, with thinner walls; distal margins and sometimes a few adjacent cells bi-stratose; costa in X-section with guide cells in 1 row, a dorsal stereid band (FNA 2007), and several stereid cells to the inside of the guide cells (Lawton 1971).
Fruit ripens about mid-spring to mid-summer (FNA 2007).
North American Range
AK, BC s to CA (FNA 2007). Known in Montana from Flathead County (Elliott & Pipp, 2016).
Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations:
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Map Help and Descriptions
(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)
Found on damp soil with a sandy or sometimes a clay texture, with habitats such as clay slopes, road banks, or sandstone bluff fissures. Elevation:330-1640 feet (FNA 2007).
Dioicous. Perichaetial bracts enveloping the stem somewhat (FNA 2007), about 5 mm in length (Lawton 1971). Seta vertical, red, 10-20 mm in height, carrying the capsule beyond the perichaetial bracts. Capsule upright, straight or a little bowed, deep brown to russet, 1.5-3.2 mm in length, the base sometimes a little larger around than the rest of the capsule; peristome single, the 16 teeth split almost to the bottom, creating 2 thread-like divisions, these filaments spiraled when dry, red, strongly covered with papillae or tiny sharp points. Calyptra like a draping hood (FNA 2007), smooth (Crum & Anderson et al., 1981).
- Literature Cited AboveLegend: View Online Publication
- Crum, H.A. and L.E. Anderson. 1981. Mosses of Eastern North America. 2 volumes. Columbia University Press, New York. 1328 pp.
- Elliott, J.C. and A.K. Pipp. 2018. A Checklist of Montana Mosses (1880-2018). December 20th. Montana Natural Heritage Program, Helena, Montana. 73 pp.
- Flora of North America Editorial Committee, eds. 2007. Flora of North America North of Mexico. Volume 27. Bryophytes: Mosses, Part 1. Oxford University Press, Inc., NY. xxi + 713 pp.
- Lawton, E. 1971. Moss Flora of the Pacific Northwest. Hattori Botanical Laboratory. Japan: Yamabuki-cho, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo. 362 pages plus appendices.
- Additional ReferencesLegend: View Online Publication
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- Lawton, E. 1971. Keys for the Identification of the Mosses on the Pacific Northwest. Reprinted from 'Moss Flora of the Pacific Northwest'. Published as Supplement No. 2 of the Journal of the Hattori Botanical Laboratory. Nichinan, Miyazaki, Japan. 66 pp.
- Malcolm, B., N. Malcolm, J. Shevock, and D. Norris. 2009. California Mosses. Nelson, New Zealand: Micro-Optics Press. 430 pp.