Plant Guide > Mosses and Lichens > Mosses > Peat Mosses > Pointed Peat Moss

Pointed Peat Moss

Pointed Peat MossThe Pointed Peat-moss (Sphagnum cuspidatum), Ehrh.

Habit and habitat.-Green or brown, floating in loose tufts in ponds and on the borders of streams flowing from bogs.

Name.-The specific name is the Latin cuspidatum, sharpened at the end, referring to the cluster-branches.

Plants (gametophyte).-Long and slender, 6 to 18 inches or even several feet; cluster-branches (fascicles), spreading or hanging, not closely appressed to the stem, 3 to 5, tapering to a stout point owing to the fact that the terminal leaves are rolled lengthwise.

Leaves.-Stem-leaves small, triangular, apex 2- to 3-toothed; branch-leaves loose, erect spreading, wavy on the margins when dry, lance-like and taper-pointed, deeply concave, apex with several small teeth; awl-shaped at the ends of the branches.

Leaves at the base of the spore-case.-Distant, broadly ovate, apex cut square or obtuse; large cells lined with fibrils.

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

Spore-case.-Scattered down the stem, small, the false pedicel often half an inch long.

Spores.-Light brown, mature in July.