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

Dicranoweisia cirrata (Hedw.) Lindb. ex Milde
curly thatch-moss (dicranoweisia moss)

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

Introduction to the Bryophytes of BC

© Rosemary Taylor  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #40629)

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Distribution of Dicranoweisia cirrata
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Species Information

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Illustration Source: Some Common Mosses of BC

Species description:
Genus name refers to the relationship to Dicranum and the re­semblance to another moss, Weissia. Species name referring to the sharp pointed leaves.
When without sporophytes it produces abundant dust­like gemmae in the axils of the leaves. These, plus the abundant sporophytes that mature in late winter to spring, disseminate the species widely in urban areas near the coast.
This moss must be highly tolerant to exhaust fumes be­cause it often abounds on trees along busy urban streets.
Distinguishing characteristics:
The usual epiphytic habitat and turf-­forming masses added to the erect sporophytes with red peristomes, are distinctive.
Forming turfs or tufts of dark green to light green plants.
Similar Species:
Zygodon viridissimus is less common in the same habi­tat and also produces abundant gemmae. The tufts are not as condensed and the leaves coil helically around the shoot when dry; in Dicranoweisia the leaves are individually twisted in all directions. Orthotrichum con­simile, occurring often on the same trees as Dicranoweisia, has short setae and grooved sporangia; peristome teeth in Orthotrichum are in two rows rather than one, as in Dicranoweisia.

Habitat / Range

Usually on tree trunks or wood in early stages of decomposi­tion, also on rooftops and stone or concrete walls and occasionally on rock, usually near sea level.
World Distribution

Scattered in temperate portions of the Northern Hemisphere. In North America confined to the Pacific coast from southeastern Alaska to California.

Synonyms and Alternate Names

Didymodon hinckleyi E.B. Bartram

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Range and Status Information Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References