BFNA Title: Neckeraceae
Author:  I. Sastre de Jesús
Date: August 18, 2008
Edit Level: R 
Version: 1

Bryophyte Flora of North America, Provisional Publication
Missouri Botanical Garden

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XX. NECKERACEAE Schimper, Coroll. Bryol. Eur., 99. 1856

Inés Sastre-De Jesús


Plants medium sized to robust, glossy to dull green, shelf-forming or dendroid. Primary stem creeping and plants shelf-like or turning perpendicular to substrate and forming a stipe and then plants dendroid; in species with flattened stems forming shelves secondary branches produced regularly along the primary creeping stem, in dendroid plants secondary branches only produced distally. Rhizoids only present on primary stem or on branch tips that touch a substrate. Paraphyllia present or absent, scarce to abundant, simple or branched. Pseudoparaphyllia filamentose to foliose. Leaves on creeping stem appressed, erect-appressed to erect-spreading, ovate, lanceolate to deltoid, obtuse, broadly acute to acute; margins entire to serrulate;  costa absent or present, short and double to single; distal medial cells rhomboidal to fusiform, smooth to papillose. Stipe leaves of dendroid plants appressed, erect-spreading to erect, obovate, deltoid to lanceolate, acute, margins mostly entire, plane to recurved; costa single; distal medial cells fusiform, linear to rectangular. Leaves above stipe or on secondary branches widely erect, erect-spreading to spreading; smooth or undulate, crisped or slightly plicate; symmetric or asymmetric;  ovate, ovate-ligulate, oblong-ligulate, oblong-ovate, or ovate-lanceolate, occasionally auriculate; margins at apex slightly serrulate, serrate, or entire, mostly entire at base; apex truncate, obtuse, obtuse-apiculate, broadly acute to acute or narrowly acute; costa short and double or single; slender to prominent and broad; apical cells round, oval,  rhombic, or rhomboidal to fusiform, distal medial cells rhomboidal, fusiform to linear, linear-flexuose, basal cells linear to rectangular; smooth or prorulose, pitted or not. Sexual condition synoicous, autoicous or dioicous. Seta short to long, smooth. Capsule immersed to exerted, erect, suberect to horizontal; peristome double, exostome smooth or cross-striolate on abaxial surface, papillose distally; endostome with a low or high basal membrane, segments linear to lanceolate,  smooth to papillose, perforated along the keel by narrow slits, cilia absent or present, when present 1--3, often fused. Calyptra cucullate, naked or hairy. Spores 12--39 \um, papillose to finely papillose.


Genera 29, species ca. 140 (8 genera, 13 in the flora): temperate and tropical regions worldwide.


The Neckeraceae traditionally has included both shelf-forming (e.g., Neckera, Neckeropis, and Homalia) and dendroid (e.g., Porotrichum and Thamnobryum) pleurocarpous mosses. As characterized by M. Fleisher (1906) and V. F. Brotherus (1925) the family was divided into the Neckeroideae and Thamnioideae reflecting the two growth forms. This relationship between these two groups has been demonstrated in phylogenetic analyses (E. De Luna et al. 2000; H. Tsubota et al. 2004; Troitsky et al. 2007) where these two groups are nested in a larger clade.


SELECTED REFERENCES Brotherus, V. F. 1924--1925. Musci. In A. Engler and K. Prantl, Die natürlichen Pflansenfamilien, 2d ed. 11: 178--202. Leipzig.  Crum, H. A., and L. E. Anderson. 1981. Mosses of Eastern North America. Columbia University Press, New York. 2 vols.  De Luna, E., W. R. Buck, H. Akiyama, T. Arikawa, H. Tsubota, D. González, A. E. Newton, and A. J. Shaw. 2000. Ordinal phylogeny within the Hypnobryalean pleurocarpous mosses inferred from cladistic analyses of three chloroplast DNA sequence data sets: trnL-F, rps4, and rbcL. Bryologist 103: 242--256. Fleisher, M. 1906. Neue Familien, Gattungen und Arten der Laubmoose. Hedwigia 45: 53--87. Lawton, E. 1971. Moss flora of the Pacific Northwest. Hattori Botanical Laboratory. Nichinan, Miyasaki, Japan. Troitsky, A. V., M.S. Ignatov, V. K. Bobrova, and I. A. Milyutina. 2007. Contribution of genosystematics to current concepts of phylogeny and classification of bryophytes. Biochemistry (Moscow) 72: 1368--1376. Tsubota, H., E. De Luna, D. González, M. S. Ignatov, and H. Deguchi. 2004. Molecular phylogenetics and ordinal relationships based on analyses of a large-scale data set of 600 rbcL sequences of mosses. Hikobia 14:149--170.


1. Plants dendroid, branching beyond a distinct stipe; stem and branch leaves coarsely serrate to serrate with straight teeth.

2. Plants dull green, stem and branch leaves concave, erect spreading, costa stout . . . 1. Thamnobryum, p. XX

2. Plants light green and shiny, stem and branch leaves complanate, erect, costa slender . . .7. Porotrichum, p. XX

1. Plants forming shelves of flattened branches, branching irregularly along the creeping stem; stem and branch leaves entire, slightly serrate to serrate, when serrate teeth recurved.

3. Leaves with a small, oblong, adaxial basal lobe . . . 4. Homaliadelphus, p. XX

3. Leaves unlobed.

4. Stem and branch leaves mostly imbricate.

5. Stem and branch leaves smooth, ovate to elliptic, apex rounded-obtuse, costa single . . . . 6. Bryolawtonia, p. XX

5. Stem and branch leaves slightly plicate to smooth, ovate to ovate-oblong, apex abruptly acute to acuminate, costa none to short and double, rarely single . . .  5. Neomacounia, p. XX

4. Stem and branch leaves mostly erect to erect-spreading.

6. Stem and branch leaves apex obtuse, broadly acute to acuminate, costa mostly short and double (except in N. menziesii) . . . 1. Neckera, p. XX

6. Stem and branch leaves with apex rounded to rounded-truncate, costa mostly single.

7. Reproductive branches with leaf-like paraphyses about the vaginula; stem and branch leaves spreading-squarrose, smooth to mostly undulate or slightly undulate, oblong-ligulate, apex rounded-truncate . . . 2. Neckeropsis, p. XX

7. Reproductive branches without leaf-like paraphyses ; stem and branch leaves erect-spreading, smooth, oblong-ovate to oblong-obovate, apex rounded . . . 3. Homalia, p. XX