Bryum argenteum Hedw.
  • Sp. Musc. Frond.

This taxon is accepted by Bryaceae
Notes: More details could be found in The Plant List v.1.1. Originally in The Plant List v.1.0

General Description

Plants gregarious or in dense mats, white-green to silver-green. Stems 0.2-1 cm, strongly rounded julaceous or sometimes gemmiform. Leaves erect when moist, ovate to ovate-lanceolate, somewhat concave, 0.3-1(-1.2) mm; base green; margins rarely recurved proximally or plane distally; apex broadly rounded to acute, not cucullate, hyaline in distal 1/4-1/2 of leaf or rarely nearly entirely green; costa not reaching apex, apiculus present, sometimes short or nearly absent, hyaline, ; proximal laminal cells quadrate or short-rectangular, 12-18 µm wide, 1-2:1; distal cells short- or elongate-hexagonal, (30-)40-80 × 10-15 µm, (1-)3-5:1, walls thin or somewhat thickened, not distinctly incrassate. Specialized asexual reproduction by leaf axil bulbils, leafy, small. Seta brown to red-brown, 1-2 cm. Capsule red to red-brown, ovate, 2-3 mm; hypophysis differentiated, somewhat thickened. Spores 8-15 µm.


Plants small to medium-sized, forming turfs or cushions, whitish or silvery green to green above, green below; terricolous or saxicolous. Stems julaceous, (1.0-)5.0-5.0 mm tall, branching below, yellowish green or red to red-brown, frequently radiculose below; rhizoids red-brown, coarsely papillose, tubers absent. Leaves crowded, occasionally distant below, imbricate wet or dry, concave; broadly ovate to oval or broadly oblong to obovate, 0.5-1.5 mm long; apex hyaline, apiculate to acuminate; margins plane, entire; border absent. Costa ending below apex to aristate, weak, frequently reddish below, awn to 0.8 mm long, hyaline, frequently denticulate; in section subround, ventral surface cells 2-3, dorsal stereid band present, stereids in 1-2 rows, dorsal surface cells incrassate, guide cells absent, hydroids few. Upper laminal cells hyaline, rnomboidal, occasionally flexuose, frequently thickened at the comers, (25-)37-75(-100) µm long, 10-17 µm wide, narrowly rectangular at margin; basal cells frequently reddish, quadrate to rectangular, extending up margin in 2-4 rows. Propagulae occasionally present in leaf axils. Dioicous. Perichaetia terminal; leaves oblong-acuminate to triangular, 1.0-1.5 mm long. Seta 7-12(-20) mm long, yellowish or red to reddish brown; capsule pendulous, ovoid or pyriform, 1-2 mm long, yellowish to reddisn yellow or dark red to reddish brown, contracted below mouth when dry, neck short, occasionally larger than urn, frequently abruptly narrowed towards seta, wrinkled when dry; exothecial cells irregularly rectangular, incrassate, shorter towards mouth, 2-4 rows at mouth transversely elongated; peristome double, exostome teeth yellowish to dark red or reddish brown, apex hyaline, narrowly oblong-acuminate, 0.2-0.4 mm long, finely papillose, endostome segments keeled, perforated, cilia 2-3, basal membrane high, minutely papillose, yellowish; operculum low-conic, blunt to apiculate; spores 10-15 µm, finely papillose.


It is frequently found in disturbed places and even cities where it grows along paths, tarred roads, on walls, roofs and other concrete structures.


Bryum argenteum is cosmopolitan in distribution and common throughout the Flora area.


 Information From

World Flora Online Data. 2017.
  • A CC0 1.0 Universal (CC0 1.0).
Flora of North America @
'Flora of North America @ eFloras (2008). Published on the Internet [accessed August 2016]' Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
  • B Flora of North America Association
e-Flora of South Africa
e-Flora of South Africa. v1.21. 2018. South African National Biodiversity Institute.
  • C South African National Biodiversity Institute
World Flora Online consortium
World Flora Online Data. 2018.
  • D CC0 1.0 Universal (CC0 1.0).