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NZ Plants

Pogonatum subulatum

Family: Polytrichaceae

Pogonatum subulatum has erect, rarely branched stems with soft, dull dark-green leaves. The linear leaves narrow to a sharp tip, have toothed (serrate) margins and become contorted to incurved when dry. Leaf structure is typical for the family, having a very wide nerve (vein) and closely spaced lamellae running down almost the entire length of the upper leaf surface. Each lamella is one cell in thickness and several cells in height. The calyptra covering of the capsule is hairy and is a distinctive deep pink at the top, grading to white at the base. The peristome is typical for the family, consisting of short teeth joined at their tips to a membrane covering the capsule mouth with small openings between the teeth.

Widespread in New Zealand as a pioneer moss of damp clay banks, slips in forest and on soil associated with the roots of upturned trees.