Saturday, March 21, 2015

Moss Word of the Day: JULACEOUS


What a great word!
But what does it mean in reference to mosses?

It means that the branch is smoothly cylindric, the leaves so closely overlapping that it resembles a caterpillar or catkin.

Some common mosses that have julaceous branches are....

Myurella sibirica
This moss is not as julaceous as it's relative Myurella julacea.
Both are very tiny little mosses that like to grow in rock crevices on thin soil or mixed with other mosses on basic or calcareous rock.

Medium sized mosses would include Thelia asprella & T. hirtella, both species like to grow on tree bases in oak-hickory woods, and also Entodon seductrix which is found on limy rocks, soil and tree bases.

Thelia hirtella

close up of Thelia asprella 
(photo by Jerry Jenkins)

Entodon seductrix
(photo by Jerry Jenkins)

One of our largest julaceous mosses is Bryoandersonia illecebra which is very worm-like when new shoots first appear in the spring. It grows on the ground.

Bryoandersonia illecebra in spring
(photo by Jerry Jenkins)