Plant Guide > Mosses and Lichens > Mosses > Genus Tortula

Genus Tortula

Genus TortulaGenus TORTULA, Hedw.

The plants of this genus are variable in size with simple stems forming yellow-green tufts on walls, rocks, or rarely on trees.

The leaves are oblong or spatulate and are covered with tiny protuberances. The apex is obtuse with the vein extending beyond as a point or as a long transparent hair. Toward the apex the cells are six-sided, opaque and filled with chlorophyll grains; toward the base they are transparent and elongated.

The spore-cases are erect, oblong or cylindrical and somewhat incurved on usually long pedicels. The peristome is sometimes absent; when present, it consists of thirtytwo thread-like teeth remotely cross-barred and covered with tiny protuberances. The teeth are either straight, incurved, or spirally twisted, all united at the base into a distinct tubular more or less elongated basal membrane. The spores are small and nearly smooth.

The generic name Tortula, the diminutive of the Latin tortus, twisted, refers to the teeth.

Tortula Princeps Moss
Tortula Ruralis Moss