Genus name meaning lover of moisture, in reference to the wet habitat. Species name also referring to the habitat of springs and fountains.
Sporophytes occasional to locally abundant, reddish brown when mature; the sporangium erect, green and sub spherical when immature, but red-brown, inclined and regularly grooved when ripe. P. fontana, especially in humid, shaded sites, often produces masses of deciduous branches that serve in reproduction.
The tall, turf-like plants in wet habitats, tightly compacted with red-brown rhizoids, the male shoots terminated by a flower-like rosette of leaves and often bearing short lateral branchlets below this rosette, plus the round sporangia, grooved and inclined when dry, are useful features.
Forming dense, tall, bright yellow-green to golden-green turfs densely tangled with red rhizoids.
P. capillaris is less than ¼ the size of P. fontana and grows on disturbed mineral soil. Other species of Philonotis are impossible to distinguish on field characters and are troublesome even with microscopic features. Conostomum, similar in some respects to Philonitis" tends to form hard, rounded tufts in well-drained sites and the stiff, leafy shoots have the leaves in five neat rows, thus differing from the soft mats of Philionitis.
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
|Scientific Name||Origin Status||Provincial Status||BC List|
(Red Blue List)
|Philonotis fontana var. americana||Native||S3S4||Yellow||Not Listed|
|Philonotis fontana var. fontana||Native||S4S5||Yellow||Not Listed|
|Philonotis fontana var. pumila||Native||S3S4||Yellow||Not Listed|
Synonyms and Alternate Names:
Philonotis tomentella Molendo