7. Encalypta tianschanica J.-C. Zhao, R.-L. Hu & S. He, Novon. 7:320. 1997.
Plants small, to 6–8 mm tall, green to yellowish green above, bright brown below, in dense tufts. Stems simple or sparsely branched; central strand indistinct. Leaves slightly tortuose when dry, erect-spreading when moist, 2.2–3.5 mm long, obovate or spatulate, abruptly narrowed to a hyaline hair-point at the apex, the hair-point ca. 0.5 mm long, nearly smooth; upper leaf margins plane or nearly so; costa single, strong, ending well below the leaf apex; upper leaf cells small, irregular quadrate to rounded-quadrate, 18–25 µm wide, densely papillose, basal cells oblong 52–68 µm x 20–24 µm, with thickened transverse walls, brownish yellow; 3–4 rows of basal marginal cells linear, 45–58 µm x 11–14 µm, thin-walled, pale in color. Autoicous. Perichaetial leaves the same as or slightly smaller than the upper stem leaves. Setae very short, 1.5–1.7 mm long, erect or slightly inclined, brownish yellow; capsules ovoid, smooth, suddenly contracted from a broad base to a very small mouth; peristome absent; annuli undifferentiated; opercula low conic-rostrate, with a long, slightly oblique beak. Calyptrae covering the whole capsules, smooth, often ragged at base, with an obtuse rostrum, ca. 1/3 the calyptra length. Spores 38–45 µm in diameter, heteropolar, with large, verrucate protuberances (warty papillae) on the distal surface, radially plicate on the proximal surface.
Type. China: Xinjiang, Tian-shan Mountain Range, Guong-nes forest station, near Guong-nes river, 43o15'N, 84o45' E, J.-C. Zhao 953288-b (holotype HBNU; isotypes HSNU, MO).
Chinese specimens examined: see the type cited above.
Habitat: on soil at bases of trees in Picea schrenkiana forests, alt. 2000 m; Distribution: endemic to China.
Encalypta tianschanica is named after Tianshan, the largest mountain in the central part of Eurasia. The species having “warty” spores undoubtedly belongs to the section Rhabdotheca. Within the section it is similar to Encalypta buxbaumioidea and E. spathulata in having hyaline hair-pointed leaves, undifferentiated annuli, and no peristome teeth (T. Cao & C. Gao 1990). Sporophytically, Encalypta tianschanica appears closest to E. buxbaumioidea by sharing peculiarly shaped capsules that are gasterpodous, gradually or abruptly contracted to a small mouth and by having short setae (less than 2.0 mm long). It differs from Encalypta buxbaumioidea by its ovoid capsules that are abruptly contracted to a very small mouth, its costa ending well below the leaf apex, and by its upper leaf margins that are plane or nearly so. In contrast, Encalypta buxbaumioidea has narrowly pyriform capsules that are gradually contracted to a small mouth, has costa excurrent into a rather long awn, and has the upper leaf margins distinctly incurved.
Illustrations: Pl. 104, figs. 1–12.