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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Norwegian Timmia Moss - Timmia norvegica

Status Under Review
Native Species

Global Rank: G5
State Rank: SNR

Agency Status
MNPS Threat Rank:

External Links

General Description
Plants: Acrocarpous. Growing in upright clumps, green to green with yellow tones above, brown below, with deciduous and longer, fragile-based leaves above (FNA 2007). Stems 2-7 cm tall (Lawton 1971); possessing a central stand; rhizoids numerous (FNA 2007).

Leaves: Appressed, overlapping to curled and twisted when dry, spreading a little when hydrated, lance-shaped; sheath base (enveloping the stem) fragile and not well-developed, transparent in the upper leaves, brown to black with reddish-orange tones in leaves below; the non-clasping limb roughly toothed above, less toothed, wavy or nearly smooth below, green; transition from sheath to limb gradual; costa single, robust, extending to just below to beyond the leaf tip (FNA 2007).

Leaf Cells: Costa papillate on the dorsal surface or with terminal teeth, mammillate on the ventral surface, in X-section at mid-limb with large dorsal and ventral cells, 2 stereid bands, and large guide cells; sheath laminal cells rectangular, wider and shorter near the transition to the limb, longer and more slender near the margins, with 0-8 large, rough papillae on the dorsal surface of the lumen; limb laminal cells with high mammillae on the ventral surface, the dorsal surface smooth; cells at leaf attachment fragile and hyaline for 1 or more rows (FNA 2007).

Timmia norvegia var. norvegica: Present in Montana.
Somewhat coarse; leaves 3-12 mm in length, 0.8-1.1 mm in width; costa base deeply colored, more firmly connected to the stem than to the lamina; the upper leaves falling and frequently larger than those below, but never with bunches of loose leaves at the end of the stem (FNA 2007).

Timmia norvegica var. excurrens:
Usually smaller and finer than plants of var. norvegica; leaves 2-6 mm in length; costa base lightly colored, excurrent, not connected to the stem more firmly than the lamina; bunches of loose leaves occasionally at the end of the stem (FNA 2007).

Diagnostic Characteristics
Timmia norvegica has fragile leaf bases, unlike T. austriaca and T. megapolitana, and its sheath-limb transition is more gradual (FNA 2007).

Range Comments
North American Range

Variety norvegica: AK e to NU, BC, AB, MB, QC, NL, MT and CO (FNA 2007). Known in Montana from Flathead and Glacier Counties (Elliott 2016).

Variety excurrens: AK e to NU, QC (FNA 2007).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 1

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density



(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)

Variety norvegica: Calciphilic; wet habitats like seepy hillsides, wet fissures and rock shelves, and streambanks. Elevation: 0-11,810 feet (FNA 2007).

Variety excurrens: Calciphilic; protected limestone bluffs near rivers. Elevation: 3-4920 feet (FNA 2007).

Reproductive Characteristics
Dioicous. Stem grows through and beyond the perigonia; perigonia each with 5-40 antheridia; perichaetia each with 1-6 archegonia. Capsules generally 2.5-3 mm in length; exostome teeth yellow below, lighter in color or transparent above; endostome with 64 knobby, papillose cilia that are transversely ridged interiorly (FNA 2007).

Variety norvegica: Very seldom fruiting (FNA 2007).

  • Literature Cited AboveLegend:   View Online Publication
    • 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. 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
    Do you know of a citation we're missing?
    • 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.
    • Smith, A.J.E. 1980. The Moss Flora of Britain and Ireland. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. 705 pp.
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Citation for data on this website:
Norwegian Timmia Moss — Timmia norvegica.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from