BFNA Title: Schlotheimia
Author: D. H. Vitt
Date: July 11, 2003
Edit Level: R Brum+
Version: 1

Bryophyte Flora of North America, Provisional Publication
Missouri Botanical Garden
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7.  SchlotheimIA Bridel, Musc. Recent. Suppl. 2: 16.  1812 * [For Ernst Friedrich von Schlotheim (1764--1832), a paleontologist held in high regard by Bridel]

Dale H. Vitt

Plants medium-sized, in dense, tomentose, usually reddish-brown mats on trees.  Stems creeping, with numerous, ascending, stout, usually forked branches up to 2 cm high.  Branch leaves appressed to loosely-appressed, erect, often spirally-twisted around stem when dry, narrowly lanceolate to oblong-ligulate, usually acute, apiculate or long-cuspidate, sometimes rugose; margins entire; costa strong, excurrent or ending at apex; distal laminal cells small, rarely greater than 10 µm, rounded, thick-walled, usually smooth; basal laminal cells elongate, porose.  Sexual condition pseudautoicous, dwarf male plants on leaves of female plant.  Seta smooth.  Capsule fully exserted, rarely immersed; elliptic to cylindric, erect, usually smooth or lightly plicate; stomates superficial; peristome double; endostome segments 16, shorter than exostome, pale sometimes rudimentary; exostome teeth 16, well-developed, linear-lanceolate, often blunt, erect or recurved, thick densely papillose-striate.  Calyptra mitrate, long-conic to campanulate, 4--6 lobed at base, naked or hairy, usually covering entire capsule.  Spores anisosmorphic.


Species 100--150 (2 in the flora); pantropical; Mexico, Central America, South America, Africa, Australia, Pacific Islands (New Zealand).


The distinctive dark-reddish coloration, habit in tree canopies and on tree trunks, and 4--6 lobed, campanulate calyptra are diagnostic features of this genus.


1.  Leaves gradually acute or acuminate, not rugose; calyptrae smooth.............. . . . . Schlotheimia lancifolia

1.  Leaves abruptly apiculate, rugose; calyptra papillose near apex . . . . Schlotheimia  rugifolia


1. Schlotheimia lancifolia E. B. Bartram, Bryologist 35: 9.  1932


Plants in shiny, bright-green, reddish-brown, or dark-brown mats.  Stems up to 16 mm.  Stem leaves oblong lanceolate to narrowly-lanceolate, 1.5--2.3 mm, gradually narrowed to narrowly acute or acuminate, sometimes serrulate apex, not rugose or undulate; costa percurrent; distal laminal cells 6--8 µm wide, irregularly quadrate to rounded-elliptic.  Seta 3--5 mm.  Capsule 1.4--2 mm.


Logs, trunks of trees to 8 m; extremely rare and probably restricted to undisturbed hemlock-hardwood zone; moderate elevations; endemic to southern Blue Ridge Escarpment; N.C.


This species differs from S. rugifolia in having non-rugose, gradually acute leaves.


2. Schlotheimia rugifolia (Hooker) Schwaegrichen, Spec. Musc. Suppl. 2(1): 150.  139.  1824

Orthotrichum rugifolium Hooker, Musci Exot. 2: 19. 128. 1819


Plants in reddish-brown to dark-brown mats.  Stems 2--8 mm.  Stem leaves oblong to oblong-ligulate, 1.4--1.6 mm, mucronate to apiculate, rugose; costa shortly excurrent into mucro; distal laminal cells 5--9 µm wide, rounded-quadrate.  Seta 2.5--4 mm.  Capsule 1.7--2.2 mm.


Logs, trunks of trees frequently above 3 m, often on branches in tree canopies; low elevations; Ala., Fla., Ga., La., Miss., N.C., S.C., Tenn., Texas, Va.; Mexico; West Indies; Central America; South America.


Schlotheimia rugifolia is distinguished by rugose, abruptly apiculate leaves.  Characteristically the plants have a dark reddish-brown color, which is best developed under xeric conditions.