Genus named in honour of J. Hedwig whose original work formed the foundation of the understanding of mosses. Species name referring to the remarkable hairs that fringe the perichaetial leaves that surround the sporangium.
Sporophytes abundant, golden brown, immersed, usually apparent when plants are moist, appearing in spring to summer.
The much-branched plants that are yellowish-green when humid, nearly white when dry, the white leaf tips, the lack of midrib in the leaves, the ciliate leaves surrounding the immersed sporangium and the lack of peristome teeth make this moss distinctive.
Forming mats or tufts, firmly to loosely attached and irregularly branched.
Some species of Racomitrium are similar in colour and habitat but all have a midrib in the leaf, sporophytes with a long seta and conspicuous peristome teeth. From Schistidium, the Hedwigia differs in colour; Schistidium also usually has peristome teeth.
If more than one illustration is available for a species (e.g., separate illustrations were provided for two subspecies) then links to the separate images will be provided below. Note that individual subspecies or varietal illustrations are not always available.
Illustration Source: Some Common Mosses of BC