The Moss Families of the British Isles

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L. Watson and M. J. Dallwitz

Implicit Attributes

Unless indicated otherwise, the following attributes are implicit throughout the descriptions, except where the characters concerned are inapplicable.

Gametophyte. Plants “normal”, with leaves containing chlorophyll. Not dendroid. Plants without comal tufts. The branches not in fascicles. Shoots not complanate. Paraphyllia absent. Pseudoparaphyllia absent. Stems not tomentose. Leaves present. The leaves of main stems and branches similar in form. The leaves neither sphagnoid nor leucobryoid. The leaves not distichous; not secund; not crisped when dry; not plicate. Leaf bases not decurrent. Leaf blades not lamellate. Leaf blade apices not hyaline. Leaf blade margins unistratose.

Plants not gemmiferous.

Sporophyte. Capsules neither flattened nor angular; without an externally conspicuous apophysis. The apophysis remaining smooth. Capsules smooth; without an annulus; dehiscing via a lid; opening passively. The peristome arising at the mouth of the capsule. The peristome teeth not spirally twisted; apically free; not grouped. The cilia and processes of the endostome not united into a conical lattice. Setae present.

Ecology. Not nitrophilous. Not associated with trunks of tree ferns.


To view the illustrations with detailed captions, go to the interactive key. This also offers full and partial descriptions, diagnostic descriptions, differences and similarities between taxa, lists of taxa exhibiting or lacking specified attributes, and distributions of character states within any set of taxa.

Cite this publication as: ‘Watson, L., and Dallwitz, M.J. 2005 onwards. The moss families of the British Isles. Version: 21st June 2009. http://delta-intkey.com’.

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