Liverworts and Mosses (Bryophytes)

Liverworts and Mosses (Bryophytes)

The bryophytes are relatively small plants with numerous round chloroplasts in each cell. They are lacking the flowers and specialized water conducting cells of vascular plants. However, water may be retained in tissues of these plants for considerable periods of time due to the presence of numerous empty cells scattered throughout the plant body.

The life cycle of bryophytes typically consists of two phases; first, the leafy green gametophyte that produces motile gametes and second the usually brownish non-leafy sporophyte generation that produces spores.

About 45 genera of these plants occur in or near fresh waters of North America. Of these, about 12 are liverworts (class Hepaticae) which are small, flattened green plants.

Some of these lack distinct development of stems and leaves while others possess these types of structures. Riccia is a slender branched liverwort usually floating individually just beneath the surface of ponds, canals and ditches. Often common in the same environment, Ricciocarpus is a notched, semicircular form about 1 cm in diameter with black rhyzoids on the under surface. Jungermannia is a leafy liverwort found in streams and slow waters.

The true mosses, those bryophytes with distinct stems and leaves, are in the class Muscixteat moss éphagnum is probably the best known of the mosses. It is widespread and under proper conditions forms extensive bogs. Fontinalis and a number of other true mosses often occur in large waving masses, particularly in spring and mountain streams.

These are typically long, sinuous plants with thick set leaves arising in various fashions along the stem. Interesting assemblages of small plants and animals usually inhabit masses of these mosses.

Next Topics…


Comments are closed

...more from Dr. Gordon Snyder
Dr. Gordon Snyder on Google

Home | Privacy Policy | Customer Service | Contact Us | Links

Visa Master Card AmEx PayPal

Please visit our family of websites

Student water science projects online store online store online store

Whales Without Borders

Water filters, water test kits, water equipment

New Water Sciences Websites
Basic Water Science Topics
Student Water Kits
Photos, Videos No Fence Wetland Restoration

Scrapbook card making paper crafts online store
Urban Paper Crafter Store Map
Urban Paper Crafter Videos

Music, music composition, restore vinyl records online store
spam prevention

All our websites are different...
Website created by Gordon Snyder and hosted by:
Last updated on:

Family Friendly Website Safe Surf Sites Water Friendly Website Award Internet Rating Content Assoc. © 1998 - 2020 Gordon Snyder & Consultants, Inc., All rights reserved .