Monday, April 30, 2007

Woe is Moss

I thought there were just a couple of species back in the swamp and wet edges of the cedar bush, I thought they'd be easy to identify. Wrong on both counts.

Let's call it moss 1--I don't know if the darker slimy stuff is part of it, or another moss. It was definitely associated with it, not accidental to it.

I chose three that seemed to me to be both common and distinctive (and a fourth, some kind of tiny-leafed aquatic plant), photographed them and came home to identify them.

Moss 2 seems like a good name for this one.

Juniper moss? I don't know. How about moss 3?

This looks something like baby's tears (Soleirolia soleirolii)

Turns out I have no eye for moss.


Susannah Anderson said...

"Moss 2 seems like a good name for this one."

Well, waddyaknow! That's what I called it, too!

I envy Celeste, at Dzonoqua's Whistle: she seems to have them all at her fingertips.

I mostly stick to "tiny moss", "lawn moss", "log moss" and "beach moss". And, of course, "Moss 2".

burning silo said...

I had some problems with my mosses too, although I did find it helpful to use a little 30X pocket microscope thing to study the mosses. I ended up bringing little parts indoors to examine. I'm now thinking of creating a little colleciton fo mosses.

Matt Goff said...

hDo you have larger versions of these moss photos? I might be able to help with them, but it's a little difficult for me to say for sure with the size photos I can see here.

Moss 1 looks like it might be Hypnum dieckii, Tiny moss looks like it might be a Rhizomnium sp, if Moss 3 was growing on a rock, it looks like it might be a Brachythecium, and Moss 2 seems like it could be a Polytrichum (or at least in the Polytrichaceae family).

I'm not positive about any of these, and might be able to have a little more confidence with higher resolution photos.

Matt Goff said...

One other thing, I've started a page of local bryophytes for my area. It's definitely far from complete (I hope to make much progress on it this summer), but it might be helpful.

Sitka Bryophyte List

Sonja Andic said...

Hello Pamela, I wanted to say I enjoy reading your blog. I like the detail and fun you give small things. Are you a Malkovic fan? Do you just examine life around your house or do you recommend any trails in your area for hiking/bird watching.
Cheers Sonja Andic

Pamela Martin said...


I mostly watch a piece of private land near my home--but I do also walk in Vanderwater Conservation Area, just a few km east of here--lots of trails, lots of habitats, stretches from Vanderwater road down to Roslin. I alos walk on a road allowance near here--kept open by ATVs--running between Thomasburg Rd. and Johnson Rd--a pleasant walk through woods and fields. Don't know what the criteria for a trail are--there are other "cart tracks" around here that will take you to some interesting places, but unlike, for example, Vanderwater, there is no parking, no amenities, so not suitable for high-volume use. I'll be watching your website develop--always interested in hearing about a trail!

Pamela Martin said...

Hi Wanderin' Weeta: Glad to have Moss 2 confirmed! And I must agree, Dzonoqua's Whistle rocks!

Pamela Martin said...

Bev: Thanks for the tip--I think I will try looking at these things a little closer. And maybe narrow my attention a little. Now that I see how very many apparent species there are, wet, dry and inbetween, I'm pretty overwhelmed.

Pamela Martin said...

Matt: Thanks for taking a look--I haven't had any time until now to get back to thinking about this--I will try to post some higher res photos to Flickr, and will let you know...

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