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

Homalothecium fulgescens (Mitt. ex C. Muell.) Lawt.
yellow curl-moss (tree mat homalothecium moss)

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

Introduction to the Bryophytes of BC

© Gwen L'Hirondelle  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #73132)

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Distribution of Homalothecium fulgescens
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Species Information

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Illustration Source: Some Common Mosses of BC

Species description:
Species name describing the shining, brightly coloured plants.
Sporophytes frequent, red-brown, with long-cylindric, suberect sporangia, maturing in late winter to spring.
H. lutescens, a European species, was once considered to be identical to H. fulgescens.
Distinguishing characteristics:
The usually irregularly branched, coarse plants that produce long-cylindric, somewhat curved sporangia, the pleated leaves and the usual habitat on tree trunks are useful features to separate this species.
Forming interwoven mats of yellow-green to dark green, glossy, creeping, much-branched plants 50-170 mm long; usually at­tached to substratum by red rhizoids. Leaves strongly pleated with the midrib resembling a central pleat. Plants not curling upward markedly when dry.
Similar Species:
The irregular branching and the usual coarseness of the plants are enough to separate H. fulgescens from H. nuttal/ii. On populations on rock, the sporophyte shape distinguishes H. fulgescens from H. aeneum in which sporangia are short-cylindric and bent at a sharp angle at the seta apex. H. nevadense of the interior has erect spo­rangia, which mature in summer rather than spring, but the plants are on shaded cliffs and usually are formed of densely compacted branches that form a turf-like mass over the substratum.

Habitat / Range

Predominantly on living tree trunks and branches (especially broad-leafed maple), also on rock and rarely on stabilized sand.
World Distribution

Confined to western North America from south­eastern Alaska to California and eastward to western Montana.

Synonyms and Alternate Names

Camptothecium lutescens var. occidentale Renauld & Cardot

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Range and Status Information Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References