Saturday, March 21, 2015

Another Mason County treasure

While on the Bar M Ranch last week, I gently dug up a tiny piece of what I think is moss (on left) and definitely some sedum. Both so delicate and beautiful. Today, I emailed my bryophyte friend/expert, Dale Kruse, who's the curator of the S.M. Tracy Herbarium at Texas A&M University, and asked him what he thought I had. Here's his reply:

"The pictures are not of a moss. It is a species of Selaginella, what we usually refer to as fern allies or club mosses. I cannot ID beyond genus without a specimen and then it may be difficult if they are not reproductive. The similarity is there, for it to be a moss, but it is actually a bit more advanced than the mosses (vascular tissue, etc.).  Once they dry out, they will look like they are just a bunch of dead twigs, but with some water and a little time (5-10 minutes?), they should re-hydrate. Glad to see you are keeping an eye out for things. It is amazing what you can find when you look a bit closer!"  

Thank YOU, Dale! I love to learn!

1 comment:

TexasDeb said...

So sweet looking - I'd have guessed moss as well but noted (once it was pointed out) how much more "organized" this seems. Fern allies and club mosses are such wonderful descriptors to boot. Great catch!

Post a Comment