Kentucky Nature Preserves Rare Plants

Kentucky State Nature Preserves Commission

A Hair Cap Moss
Polytrichum pallidisetum
Family: Polytrichaceae

Protection Status:
State Status:  T
USFWS Status: {null}

Global Rank: G4
State Rank: S2?

On soil humus and rocks in moist conditions or hardwood forests.

Species Description:


Additional Information at NatureServe

Diagnostic Characteristics:
Plants medium, dark green to blackish with age, in loose tufts. Stems 2-8 cm, simple, rarely branched, somewhat radiculose at or near the base. Leaves 6-10 mm, erect-spreading when dry, the blade spreading and recurved but not sharply reflexed when moist; sheath pale or yellowish, with tapering shoulders, hyaline-margined, the cells at the shoulders forming a differentiated hinge; marginal lamina plane or somewhat erect, 3-9 cells wide, sharply toothed from the apex almost to base of blade; blade lanceolate, sparsely toothed at back near the tip; costa excurrent, ending in short, reddish, toothed awn; lamellae (7-)20-40, crenulate in profile, 4-6 cells high, marginal cells often variable, in typically cuneate in section, flat-topped to shallowly retuse, not thick-walled, smooth; median sheath cells 80-100 ╫ 8-12 ╡m (5:1), elongate-rectangular; sheath cells oblong-linear; cells of marginal lamina 12-16 ╡m, ▒ isodiametric; perichaetial leaves not much differentiated. Seta 2-8 cm, pale-yellowish. Capsule 3-5 mm, 4-angled, suberect to inclined, pale yellowish brown, slender and somewhat curved, tapering to the base, the hypophysis not or only weakly delimited; stomata in a band in the distal part of the hypophysis; exothecial cells not bulging or mammillose and without a central thin spot; peristome 240 ╡m, divided to 0.6, the teeth ca. 50, pale. Spores 12-16 ╡m.

Grazing or browsing pressure, vegetation removal, or hydrologic changes (i.e. stream alterations road construction) would be detrimental.

Global Range:

Known Kentucky Occurrences:

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Data last updated: Wednesday, May 28, 2014
Kentucky State Nature Preserves Commission
801 Teton Trail
Frankfort,KY 40601
Phone: (502) 573-2886
Fax: (502) 573-2355
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