26. Sphagnum ovatum Hampe in C. Müll., Linnaea. 38: 546. 1874.
Plants soft, rather slender, pale green tinged with reddish or pale orange-brown, in loose tufts. Stem cortex in 1 layer, hyaline cells large, thin-walled, without fibrils and pores; central cylinder yellowish red. Stem leaves 1.0–1.4 mm × ca. 0.6 mm, ovate to ovate-ligulate with a narrower base, rounded and margins involute at the apex; hyaline cells undivided, densely fibrillose, with small, ringed pores at the opposite ends along commissural rows on the dorsal surface, with pores at the corners in the upper cells on the ventral surface. Branches in fascicles of 3(–4), with 2 spreading. Branch leaves 1.0–1.4 mm long, ovate, strongly concave, blunt at the apex, margins involute and borders differentiated; hyaline cells with numerous ringed pores at the opposite ends along commissural rows on the dorsal surface, with pores at the corners in the upper cells on the ventral surface; green cells in cross section narrowly elliptic, centrally located, narrowly exposed on both surfaces or exposed slightly more so on the dorsal surface. Dioicous. Sporophytes not seen.
Type. India: Darjeeling, Kurz 2104.
Chinese specimens examined: ANHUI: Huang Shan (Mt.), D.-K. Li 639, 2355 (KUN, SHM), S.-E. Liu
2754 (KUN), M.-J. Wang 1 (KUN). GUANGXI: Xing-an Co., C. Gao et al. 1368, 1714 (IFSBH, KUN). HAINAN: Wuzhi Shan (Mt.), D.-K. Li 04426 (KUN, MO, SHM). HEILONGJIANG: C. Gao 953 (IFSBH, KUN), S.-E. Liu 22997 (IFSBH, KUN). XINJIANG: Buer-jin Co., Q.-T. Wang 412 (KUN). XIZANG: Mo-tou Co., Y.-G. Su 3805 (KUN), 5001 (KUN, MO). YUNNAN: Bi-jiang Co., Q.-T. Zhang 6071 (KUN, MO); Da-li Co., Z.-H. Fang 6540
(KUN), H.-C. Wang 3104, 3442 (KUN); Gong-shan Co., M. Zang 884 (KUN, MO), D.-C. Zhang 521, 558 (KUN); Jing-dong Co., Y. Xuan 81-117 (KUN); Mangshi City, Gaoligong Shan (Mt.), X.-Z. Qiu 30(d) (KUN), S.-C. Xie 20(a) (KUN), W.-X. Xu 568 (KUN, YUKU); Teng-chong Co., J.-H. Pang 13(a), 22 (KUN), S.-M. Yu 80-544 (KUN); Xin-ping Co., Q.-A. Wu 791, 6190 (KUN).
Habitat: in bogs, on wet rocks near streams under coniferous or broad-leaf forests; also on wet rocks under dripping water; Distribution: China, Nepal, India, and Thailand.
This species is similar to Sphagnum khasianum, but it differs in having slender and softer plants without cucullate stem leaf apices and broader branch leaves. In contrast, Sphagnum khasianum has stouter plants with cucullate stem leaf apices and narrower branch leaves.
Illustrations: Pl. 7, figs. 1–12.