23. Schistidium pulchrum H. H. Blom, Bryophyt. Biblioth. 49: 119, fig. 41. 1996.
Plants in open to compact tufts, (yellow-)green, olivaceous, sometimes brownish or blackish. Stems 1.2-5 cm, central strand distinct. Leaves erect or curved, sometimes imbricate but usually with spreading leaf tips, sometimes weakly contorted, ovate-lanceolate, sharply keeled distally, 1.5-2.3 mm, 1-stratose, rarely 2-stratose in striae distally; margins usually recurved to near apex, smooth but sometimes slightly toothed along decurrent portion of awn, 1- or 2-stratose; apices acute or sub-obtuse; costa usually excurrent as a denticulate or spinulose-denticulate, straight or flexuose, usually bright white (sharply contrasting with the lamina), strongly decurrent awn, smooth; basal marginal cells quadrate or rectangular, trigonous; distal laminal cells variable in shape and size, isodiametric or short-rectangular, strongly trigonous, often guttulate and, occasionally, with stellate lumina, especially at mid leaf, 8-11 µm wide, smooth, strongly sinuose. Sexual condition autoicous. Capsule orange-brown or reddish brown, cylindric, 0.8-1.3 mm; exothecial cells often irregularly shaped, mostly isodiametric or oblate, occasionally mixed with a few elongate cells, thin-walled, walls sometimes curved, often with small trigones; stomata present; peristome patent to recurved, often twisted, 250-450 µm, red, densely papillose, usually weakly perforated. Spores 11-15 µm, finely granulose.
Capsules mature late spring to early summer. Rocks in somewhat shaded habitats; low to high elevations (0-2500 m); Greenland; Alta., B.C., Man., Nfld. and Labr. (Nfld.), NWT., Nunavut, Ont., Que., Sask., Yukon; Alaska, Colo., Mich., Minn., S.Dak., Utah, Wis.; Eurasia.
Although Schistidium pulchrum is variable in color and size, its bright awns that sharply contrast with the leaves and its strongly trigonous laminal cells, sometimes forming stellate lumina, especially near mid leaf, distinguish it.