When you find yourself looking deep under a ledge where the light is dim, or way in a deep dark recess under a root, or even in the dim light of an old stone foundation under a barn, that’s the time to be looking for gold.....Goblin’s Gold.
Reaching in, you grab a handful of the shiny stuff, but when you open your hand there’s nothing there! You might just have found Schistostega pennata. A tiny delicate moss that can grow in the darkest of holes on soil. The shiny stuff you see is the persistent luminous protonema from which it arises. Sometimes you might find yourself holding a fragile, tiny, pale-green, fern-like moss which is the sterile form and most often seen. It shrivels quite quickly when removed from the dark, moist soil where you found it. If you are lucky enough to find capsules, you’ll see that they are ovoid, erect and have no peristome, or teeth, around the mouth.