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BFNA | Family List | BFNA Vol. 1 | Seligeriaceae

Seligeria Bruch, Schimper & W. Gümbel, Bryol. Eur. 2: 7. 846.
[For Ignaz Seliger, a Silesian pastor]

Plants of calcareous rocks, light green to black. Alar cells not differentiated to colored and enlarged. Sexual condition autoicous. Capsule smooth; annulus ill-formed; peristome teeth smooth. Calyptra cucullate.

Species ca. 20 (13 in the flora): North America, Europe, Asia, Pacific Islands (New Zealand).

This genus is characterized as tiny acrocarpous plants, with more or less ovate, smooth capsules and linear-lanceolate leaves, and a calcareous substrate as habitat.


Vitt, D. H. 1976. The genus Seligeria in North America. Lindbergia 3: 241--275.


Crum, H. A. and L. E. Anderson. 1981. Mosses of Eastern North America, Vol. I, pp. 143--149. New York.

1 Capsules without a peristome, margins of leaf in proximal 1/3 denticulate.   Seligeria donniana
+ Capsules with a peristome, margins subentire to entire.   (2)
2 (1) Spores 17--30 µm.   (3)
+ Spores 10--16 µm.   (5)
3 (2) Spores (20--)23--30 µm; peristome of 16 reduced teeth, each of 5--8 cells.   Seligeria oelandica
+ Spores 17--25(--27) µm; peristome of 16 fully developed teeth.   (4)
4 (3) Capsules turbinate when old and dry; seta 1--1.5 mm; columella elongate with opercula tending to remain attached; leaves often trifarious.   Seligeria tristichoides
+ Capsules ovate, sometimes with flaring mouth when old and dry; seta 2--3 mm; columella short, not persistent, not attached to opercula; leaves spreading-recurved, evenly spaced around stem, not trifarious.   Seligeria polaris
5 (2) Costa excurrent, filling subulate apex.   (6)
+ Costa (except in perichaetial leaves) ending just before apex, lamina present into apex.   (9)
6 (5) Seta curved 30--90° when wet.   Seligeria recurvata
+ Seta straight when wet.   (7)
7 (6) Leaves wiry, stiffly flexuose, long-subulate, light green to dull-green; cells of leaf lamina longer than broad, pellucid; seta less than 1 mm; capsule turbinate when old, emergent.   Seligeria careyana
+ Leaves recurved-twisted to stiffly erect, stoutly subulate from a wide base, dark-green to black; cells of distal leaf lamina usually as wide as long, opaque; seta greater than 1 mm; capsule ± ovate to oblong when old, emergent to exserted.   (8)
8 (7) Leaves stiffly-erect when dry; plants dark-green, gregarious; spores 14--16 µm; capsule contracted to seta through a wrinkled neck when old; eastern North America.   Seligeria calcarea
+ Leaves twisted when dry; plants blackish, forming turfs; spores 10--14 µm; capsule ± sharply contracted to seta when old; western North America.   Seligeria subimmersa
9 (5) Plants light green; cells of leaf lamina pellucid, tending to be longer than broad; vegetative leaves linear, sometimes ± subulate; capsule turbinate to obovate, widest at mouth.   (10)
+ Plants olive-green to dark-green; cells of distal leaf lamina ± opaque, usually as broad as long; leaves oblong to lanceolate; capsule ovate to oblong, not clearly widest at mouth.   (12)
10 (9) Perichaetial leaves subulate from an ovate, sheathing base, abruptly differentiated from vegetative leaves.   Seligeria acutifolia
+ Perichaetial and vegetative leaves similar, sometimes distal leaves larger, but always similar to proximal leaves in shape.   (11)
11 (10) Leaves short, ligulate; apex broadly acute to obtuse; capsule ± pyriform when old; peristome large.   Seligeria brevifolia
+ Leaves long, subulate; apex narrowly acute; capsule obovate to pyriform when old; peristome small.   Seligeria pusilla
12 (9) Leaves stiffly erect when dry, narrowed to an obtuse, incurved, channeled acumen; perichaetial leaves clasping and rapidly narrowed to stout subula; capsule ± as wide at middle as at mouth; seta ± thick, straight to slightly curved when wet   Seligeria diversifolia
+ Leaves curved and loosely arranged when dry, narrowed to obtuse, plane, erect acumen; perichaetial leaves usually not clasping, similar to vegetative leaves; capsule wider at middle than at mouth; seta thin, curved 30--90° when wet.   Seligeria campylopoda

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