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FNA | Family List | FNA Vol. 28 | Leskeaceae | Leskea

1. Leskea australis Sharp in A. J. Grout, Moss Fl. N. Amer. 3: 193. 1934.

Leskea microcarpa Schimper ex Sullivant in A. Gray, Manual ed. 2, 659. 1856, not R. Hedwig ex Bridel 1812

Plants dark green or brown. Stems with branches ascending, ± tightly foliate, not curved at apices. Stem and branch leaves slightly differentiated. Stem leaves distinctly longer than broad, 0.4-0.7 mm; apex slenderly acuminate. Branch leaves ± crowded, ovate-lanceolate, not or slightly 2-plicate when dry, 0.2-0.5 mm; margins plane; apex gradually acuminate to acute, often blunt; costa subpercurrent; distal laminal cells 4-7µm, bulging-papillose abaxially. Seta yellow-brown, 0.4-0.9 cm. Capsule yellow-brown, cylindric, straight, 1.2-1.8 mm; annulus 1- or 2-seriate; operculum conic, short-rostrate; exostome teeth whitish; endostome segments very short, irregular. Spores 9-13 µm, very finely papillose.

Capsules mature year-round. Lower trunks and base of hardwood trees and bald cypress, logs, low woods along rivers, streams, sloughs, swamps; low to moderate elevations (0-400 m); Ala., Ark., Del., Fla., Ga., La., Miss., Mo., N.C., Tenn., Tex.

Leskea australis is common on the coastal plain of the southeastern United States. This species is distinguished by the rigid, dark green or brownish mats with ascending, terete-foliate, and somewhat tapering branches and small leaves. The branch leaf abaxial costa surface is slightly roughened, especially proximally.


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