Spread Leaved Sphagnum MossThe Spread-leaved Sphagnum (Sphagnum squarrosum); Pers.
Habit and habitat.-Bluish-green, stout, loosely crowded, the summits appearing like edelweiss, almost white when dry; common in boggy places.
Name.-The specific name is the Latin squarrosum, scurfy, applied to describe the scale-like leaves of the stem.
Plant (gametophyte).-Stems solid, simple or forking, red ; cluster-branches 4 to 5, 2 to 3 divergent, the others pendent and appressed.
Leaves.-Stem leaves soft, spreading or turned backward from the stem, tongue-shaped; apex rounded and ragged; branch-leaves Spreading widely and abruptly from the middle of the branch oblong lance-shaped, apex four-toothed.
Leaves at the base of the spore-case (perichaetial leaves).-Very broad, thin apex rounded and notched.
Habit of flowering.-Male and female flowers generally on the same plants (monoicous).
Spore-case- Large, nearly spherical, shining dark brown,
numerous at and near the summit of the plant.
Spores.-Yellow, mature in August and September.
Distribution.-North America, Europe, Asia, Africa.