E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Climacium dendroides (Hedw.) Web. & Mohr
tree-moss (tree climacium moss)

Species Account Author: Wilf Schofield
Extracted from Some Common Mosses of British Columbia

Introduction to the Bryophytes of BC

© Curtis Bjork  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #22587)

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Distribution of Climacium dendroides
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Species Information

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Illustration Source: Some Common Mosses of BC

Species description:
Genus name is derived from the broad perforations in the ladder-like, inner-peristome teeth. Species name describing the tree­like form of the plants.
Sporophytes infrequent except in floodplain areas where they are sometimes locally abundant in late winter and early spring; red-brown throughout.
Distinguishing characteristics:
The miniature, tree-like plants that arise from a creeping stem are highly characteristic.
Forming loose, tall turfs of miniature trees that arise from creeping shoots; dark green to light green with reddish-brown stems. Habitat: Terrestrial or on logs (rarely on rock), in wet to marshy habi­tats, most luxuriant in areas subject to periodic flooding, from sea level to subalpine elevations; relatively widespread bur not common.
Similar Species:
Although Leucolepis acanthoneuron has miniature tree­like plants, these do not arise from a creeping shoot. The leaves of the main stem of L. acanthoneura are whitish and narrowly triangular while those of Climacium are heart-shaped and green. Sporophytes of Leucolepis are frequent in spring and sporangia are nodding, compared to the erect sporangia of Climacium.

Habitat / Range

World Distribution

Widely distributed in the Northern Hemisphere, extending in eastern North America southward to Wisconsin and Pennsylvania and in western North America to California; also in New Zealand.

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