Plant Guide > Mosses and Lichens > Mosses > Genus Pogonatum > Hair Like Haircap Moss

Hair Like Haircap Moss

Hair Like Haircap MossThe Hair-like Hair-cap, Pogonatum capillare, (Michx.) Brid.

Habit and habitat.-Pale-green plants growing rather close together.

Name.-The specific name capillare is the Latin for "hairlike," referring to the slender character of the stem, leaves and teeth.

Plant (gametophyte).-Simple, or increasing by shoots from the summit of the main stem, 1 to 3 inches high, naked below, loosely leafy above.

Leaves.-Curled when dry, spreading when moist, 1/5 to 2/5 of an inch long, broadly lance-shaped; base transparent; margin serrate, with many-celled, triangular teeth; lamellae numerous, 30 to 35, cells of the lamellae 5 to 7 deep, the terminal broadest in section with tiny projections on the flat surface.

Habit of flowering.-Male and female flowers on separate plants (dioicous).

Veil (calyptra).-Hairy, covering the spore-case to the base.

Spore-case.-Erect, egg-shaped, 110 of an inch long, with tiny projections on the surface, not contracted below the mouth when dry.

Pedicel (seta).-One-half to one and a half inches long, slender, flexuous, erect.

Lid (operculum).-Hemispherical at the enlarged base, abruptly straight-beaked.

Teeth (peristome).-Thirty-two in number, long and narrow.

Spores.-Mature in winter.

Distribution.-Rare in the mountains of New York, common in the mountains of New England; also along the Gaspe Coast to Newfoundland, west to the Rocky Mountains.