(Thuidium, Anomodon, and Leskea)

I. Thuidium delicatulum. Thuidium is the “fern moss.” It is common, especially on logs, in most woods.

Thuidium delicatulum habitat

Thuidium on a log

Thuidium is twice-pinnately branched looking very fern-like.

Thuidium delicatulum

Thuidium is quite fern-like (twice pinnate).

Microscopically, Thuidium is striking. It’s stems are clothed in filamentous, papillose paraphyllia.

Thuidium delicatulum paraphyllia

Paraphyllia are filamentous stem outgrowths between the leaves.

Thuidium leaves are stoutly unipapillose.

Thuidium delicatulum leaves

Thuidium leaves are stoutly unipapillose.

II. Anomodon. The genus Anomodon consists of robust mat-forming pleurocarps often found at the base of trees or on cliffs.Here’s Anomodon attenuatus at the base of a tree.

Anomodon attenuatus

Anomodon attenuatus is common at the bases of trees

Microscopically, most Anomodon leaves are tongue-shaped. The cells are pluripapillose.

Anomodon attenuatus leaf

Anomodon leaves are often tongue-shaped, always pluripapillose

III. Leskea. Like Anomodon, Leskea is a papillose pleurocarp often found on trees. Leskea is found quite high up the trunk, at about eye-level. It’s a rather small moss.

Leskea gracilescens

Leskea is a small high-bark pleurocarp with erect sporophytes and straight capsules

Microscopically, Leskea leaves are tapered and blunt-tipped. The cellls are unipapillose.

Leskea gracilescens leaf

Leskea leaves are tapered, blunt, costate, and papillose