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FNA | Family List | FNA Vol. 28 | Brachytheciaceae | Zelometeorium

1. Zelometeorium patulum (Hedwig) Manuel, J. Hattori Bot. Lab. 43: 118. 1978.

Hypnum patulum Hedwig, Sp. Musc. Frond., 279, plate 73 [lower & at right], figs. 1-5. 1801; Meteoriopsis patula (Hedwig) Brotherus

Stems to 15 cm, branches to 15 mm, straight to flexuose. Stem leaves 1-1.6 × 0.8-1.2 mm (squarrose leaves in densely foliate stem parts) or 1.5-2 × 0.4-0.7 mm (erect leaves in moderately loosely foliate stem parts); laminal cells 45-70 × 4-6 µm; basal cells to 12 µm wide, walls thick, pitted. [Capsule exserted beyond perichaetial leaves].

Shrubs in humid evergreen hammock forests; low elevations (0 m); Fla.; Mexico; West Indies; Central America; South America; Pacific Islands (Galapagos Islands).

The smooth glossy plants of Zelometeorium patulum, pendent in loose tangles, with their usually distinctly spreading-squarrose leaves, are easy to recognize. In the flora area, the species is known only from Collier and Miami-Dade counties. There has been only one collection (in 1993) made of this moss from Florida since 1940, and the species is perhaps in danger of extinction in the flora area due to destruction of habitat. In tropical areas, stems can be much longer, to 47 cm (M. G. Manuel 1977).


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