Ribbed Bog Moss - Aulacomnium palustre
MNPS Threat Rank
Plants: Loose or dense tufts. Yellow-green above and brown below. Stems 1-11 cm tall with numerous rhizoids in the leaf axis, but not at the top.
Leaves: When dry, leaves contorted. When wet, leaves erect-spreading, ovate, oblong-lanceolate, lanceolate, or linear-lanceolate, 1-4 mm long, and slightly decurrent. Apex acuminate and either long and narrow or more-or-less obtuse and short. Margins recurved, entire, or serrulate at the apex. Costa ends before apex.
Leaf Cells: Cells with a single, large papilla on each surface. Upper leaf cells rounded, 12-16 µm, and sometimes slightly sinuose. Lower leaf cells longer and somewhat sinuose. Basal cells in more than 1-layer, inflated, often brown, and 20-30 x 10-20 µm.
A. palustre is like a larger version of A. androgynum. However, the former’s gemmae are almost leaf-like, triangular in shape, and arranged spirally along the pseudopodium’s length, whereas A. androgynum’s gemmae are shaped like a spindle and found only at the top of the pseudopodium. Additionally, A. palustre has swollen brownish cells across the leaf insertions, which A. palustre lacks (Crum 1981).
Greenland; Canada: AB, BC, MB, NB, NL, NT, NS, NU, ON, PE, QC, SK, YT; United States: AL, AK, AZ, AR, CA, CO, CT, DE, FL, GA, ID, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, LA, ME, MD, MA, MI, MN, MS, MO, MT, NE, NV, NH, NJ, NM, NY, NC, ND, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VT, VA, WA, WV, WI, WY; Mexico; West Indies (Dominican Republic); n, w South America; Europe; Asia; Pacific Islands (New Zealand); Australia (FNA 2014). In Montana: Madison, Mineral, Missoula, Park, Stillwater, Sweet Grass, and Ravalli Counties (Elliott 2016).
Although widely distributed, the species does not necessarily occur frequently throughout its range.
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)
On wet soil in wetlands, including fens, marshes, and swamps (Elliott 2016).
Dioicous. Seta is 2.0-4.5 mm tall. Capsules inclined to horizontal, more-or-less zygomorphic, and 2-4 mm long.
Gemmae leaf-like, borne in clusters at leaf apex and singularly along the pseudopodium (Lawton 1971).
- 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). Updated 3 January, 2020. Montana Natural Heritage Program, Helena, Montana. 73 pp.
- Flora of North America Editorial Committee, eds. 2014. Flora of North America North of Mexico. Volume 28. Bryophytes: Mosses, Part 2. Oxford University Press, Inc., NY. xxi + 702 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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- Aho, Ken Andrew. 2006. Alpine and Cliff Ecosystems in the North-Central Rocky Mountains. Ph.D. Dissertation. Bozeman, Montana: Montana State University. 343 p.
- Flowers, S. 1973. Mosses: Utah and the West. Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah. 567 p.
- 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.