Flat Pocket Moss - Fissidens fontanus
A Pocket Moss
Plants: Stems flaccid, long (120 x 6 mm), and highly branched. Yellow-green to dark green, sometimes becoming brown to black, especially in older sections.
Leaves: Leaves paired, lanceolate to linear-lanceolate and commonly slightly falcate, and up to 7.0 x 0.6 mm. Leaves usually 10 or more times as long as wide. Apex acute. Vaginant lamina about 1/3 to 1/2 the length of leaf. Dorsal lamina often ends before the base of leaf.
Leaf Cells: Laminal cells of 1-layer and smooth, but sometimes are 2-layered near costa. Median cells above the vaginant leaf are quadrate to hexagonal, thick-walled and slightly bulging, and become larger towards the costa. Margin entire with no border. Basal cells rectangular. Costa ends 15-35 cells before the apex.
When dry the leaves are fragile. Plants are often encrusted with diatoms. Could be confused with F. grandifrons which occurs in flowing water, but has pluristratose laminal cells. Because of their vaginant leaf, Fissidens are often confused for liverworts, particularly Diplophyllum.
Canada: BC, ON; United States: AL, AZ, AR, CA, CT, FL, GA, ID, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, LA, ME, MA MI, MN, MS, MO, MT, NJ, NM, NY, NC, OH, OK. OR, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX, VA, WA, WV, WI; Mexico; West Indies; Central America; Europe; Africa (FNA 2007). In Montana, known from Cascade and Granite Counties (Elliott 2016).
Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations:
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(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)
Aquatic, attached to rocks, soil, and other substrates in flowing and stagnant waters and in coastal estuaries.
Seta 0.5-0.6 mm tall. Capsules are lateral, straight, erect, ovoid to cylindric, somewhat contracted under the mouth when dry, and 0.5-0.6 mm long. Calyptra smooth. Autoicous.
Perigonia and perichaetia on short (sometimes long) axillary branches, are 1-5 per leaf axil, and are inconspicuous.
- Literature Cited AboveLegend: View Online Publication
- 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.
- 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.
- Lawton, E. 1971. Moss Flora of the Pacific Northwest. Hattori Botanical Laboratory. Japan: Yamabuki-cho, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo. 362 pages plus appendices.