sphagnum moss

(Sphagnum spp.)

Overview
sphagnum moss (Sphagnum sp.)
Photo by Luciearl
 

Sphagnum moss, also called peat moss, is one of the major components of peat. It has a worldwide distribution, occurring on every continent except Antarctica. In Minnesota it occurs in the northern and eastern two-thirds of the state west of the Prairie Parkland and from the Metro Region north. It grows in peat bogs, swamps, wet depressions in woodlands, and other wet habitats. It colonizes and often dominates nutrient-poor areas where other plants can’t survive.

There are about 380 species of sphagnum moss worldwide, more than 100 species in North America north of Mexico, and at least 27 species in Minnesota.

     
           
 
Description
 
 

Sphagnum moss has a main stem with branches in tight bundles (fascicles) of 3 or more. The fascicles are arranged spirally arranged around the stem, and usually have both spreading and hanging branches. The stem and branches are covered with unlobed, photosynthesizing leaves. The leaves are also arranged spirally around the stem or branch. There is usually a tuft (capitulum) of young branches at the tip of the stem. The lower part of the plant is dead and decomposing.

Identification of many species requires a stereo microscope. Many species can be identified in the field, but this often requires close examination with a hand lens with 20X magnification.

 
     
 
Distribution
 
 

Distribution Map

 

Sources

4, 7, 10, 24, 29, 30.

 
  4/5/2020      
         
 
Taxonomy
 
  Kingdom Plantae (green algae and land plants)  
  Subkingdom Viridiplantae (green plants)  
  Infrakingdom Streptophyta (land plants and green algae)  
  Superdivision Embryophyta (land plants)  
  Division Bryophyta (mosses and liverworts)  
  Subdivision Sphagnophytina  
  Class Sphagnopsida  
  Subclass Sphagnidae  
 

Order

Sphagnales  
 

Family

Sphagnaceae  
       
 

Subordinate Taxa

 
 

brown peatmoss (Sphagnum fuscum)

central peatmoss (Sphagnum centrale)

chrome peatmoss (Sphagnum squarrosum)

fen peatmoss (Sphagnum warnstorfii)

fringed bogmoss (Sphagnum fimbriatum)

Girgensohn’s peatmoss (Sphagnum girgensohnii)

greater peatmoss (Sphagnum majus)

Magellan’s peatmoss (Sphagnum magellanicum)

narrowleaf peatmoss (Sphagnum angustifolium)

northern peatmoss (Sphagnum capillifolium)

orange peatmoss (Sphagnum subsecundum)

papillose peatmoss (Sphagnum papillosum)

red peatmoss (Sphagnum rubellum)

rigid bogmoss (Sphagnum teres)

Russow’s peatmoss (Sphagnum russowii)

Wulf’s peatmoss (Sphagnum wulfianum)

 
       
 

Synonyms

 
 

 

 
       
 

Common Names

 
 

peat moss

sphagnum moss

 
       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

Costa

On ferns: The central axis of a pinna, to which pinnules are attached. On mosses: the central axis (midvein) of a leaf. On insects: The leading edge of the forewing.

 

Fascicle

A small bundle or cluster, often sheathed at the base, as with pine needles.

 

 

 

 

       
Visitor Photos
   

Share your photo of this plant.

This button not working for you?
Simply email us at info@MinnesotaSeasons.com.
Attach one or more photos and, if you like, a caption.

       
Luciearl
       
  sphagnum moss (Sphagnum sp.)   sphagnum moss (Sphagnum sp.)
       
  sphagnum moss (Sphagnum sp.)   sphagnum moss (Sphagnum sp.)
       
  sphagnum moss (Sphagnum sp.)    
       
MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos
   
  sphagnum moss (Sphagnum sp.)   sphagnum moss (Sphagnum sp.)
       

 

Camera

     
 
Slideshows
 
 
     
     
     

 

slideshow

       
Visitor Videos
       

Share your video of this plant.

This button not working for you?
Simply email us at info@MinnesotaSeasons.com.
Attach one or more videos or YouTube links and, if you like, a caption.

       
       
Other Videos
 
  Sphagnum Moss
Nepenthesis
 
   
 
About

Published on Oct 13, 2012

How to grow SPHAGNUM MOSS! Sphagnum moss holds up to 20 times its own weight in water and is ESSENTIAL for many soil mixes intended to hold lots of moisture! In this video you'll learn how to grow your own.

CLICK HERE TO SUBSCRIBE ► http://tinyurl.com/Nepenthesis
CHECK OUT MY WEBSITE ► http://www.nepenthesisland.com/
FOLLOW ME ON TWITTER ► http://twitter.com/Nepenthesis

   
       
  Boreal Forest Part 2 Sphagnum Moss
EastWoodlandSurvival
 
   
 
About

Published on Aug 5, 2013

Identifying Sphagnum Moss and some video of the Spruce Moose Forest of Western Alberta Canada.

   
       

 

Camcorder

         
Visitor Sightings
   

Report a sighting of this plant.

This button not working for you?
Simply email us at info@MinnesotaSeasons.com.
Be sure to include a location.

Luciearl
3/30/2020

Location: Cass County

sphagnum moss (Sphagnum sp.)


Luciearl
2/23/2018

Location: Lake Shore, MN, Cass County

sphagnum moss (Sphagnum sp.)


     
     
 
MinnesotaSeasons.com Sightings
         

 

 

Binoculars


Last Updated:

About Us | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | © 2021 MinnesotaSeasons.com. All rights reserved.