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BFNA | Family List | BFNA Vol. 1 | Pottiaceae

Hilpertia H. Zander, Phytologia. 65: 427. 1989.

Richard H. Zander

Plants in loose cushions, greenish brown above, light brown below. Stems to 1 cm, hyalodermis absent, sclerodermis not or weakly differentiated, central strand distinct; axillary hairs to 8 cells long, all hyaline or the proximal one yellow-brown. Stem leaves crowded, larger above, appressed and tightly spiraled when dry, weakly spreading when moist, 1--1.4 (plus 0.3--0.6 of awn) mm; ovate to circular, adaxial surface flat to quite concave, base not differentiated; distal margins strongly revolute (to 2  ), entire or broadly dentate above, cells of revolute margin enlarged, strongly chlorophyllose; apex broadly acute, hyaline in an apical triangle; costa narrow but broader above, excurrent as a hyaline awn, lamina inserted laterally, adaxial outgrowths none, superficial adaxial cells long-rectangular, in 2--4 rows; transverse section rounded, adaxial epidermis present, adaxial stereid band absent, guide cells 2 in 1 layer, hydroid strand present, abaxial stereid band present, rounded in cross-sectional shape, abaxial epidermis absent; basal cells weakly differentiated, rectangular, thin-walled; distal medial cells hexagonal to short-rectangular or rhomboid, rather large, (14--)20--25 µm wide, 1--4:1; papillae absent medially, hollow-papillose on revolute margins, cell walls thin to thickened and porose, superficial abaxial cell walls thick, weakly convex superficially on both sides, cells of leaf apex rhomboid to fusiform, smooth. Specialized asexual reproduction by brood bodies borne on proximal rhizoids, brown, spheric to elliptic. Sexual condition polyoicous: synoicous, paroicous, autoicous or perigonia terminal on separate plants. Perichaetia terminal, interior leaves sheathing, usually differentiated, long-oval, margins usually somewhat differentiated, medial laminal cells rectangular, very thin-walled. Seta 0.35--0.4 cm. Capsule stegocarpous, theca elliptic, occasionally weakly ventricose, 1.2--1.5 mm, annulus of 3 rows of smaller, quadrate, highly vesiculose cells; operculum broadly short-conic to long-conic, peristome teeth 32, long, linear, twisted counterclockwise about 1/2 turn. Calyptra cucullate. Spores 13--16 µm. KOH laminal color reaction red.

Species 1 (1 in the flora): Canada, Europe, Asia.

Hilpertia is unique among the Pottioideae in the elaboration of a photosynthetic organ consisting of laminal marginal cells rolled in a spiral tube, thin-walled and hollow-papillose. The species is characteristic of cold steppe habitats.


Zander, R. H.1993. Genera of the Pottiaceae: Mosses of Harsh Environments. Bull. Buffalo Soc. Nat. Sci. 32. Zander, R. H. 1989. Seven new genera in Pottiaceae (Musci) and a lectotype for Syntrichia. Phytologia 65: 424--436.


Tan, B. C. and J. Zhao. 1997. New moss records and range extensions of some xeric and alpine moss species in China. Cryptogamie Bryol. Lichénol. 18: 207-212.
Zander, R. H. and W. C. Steere. 1978. Tortula scotteri sp. nov. from the Northwest Territories of Canada. Bryologist 81: 463--467.

Version History for Hilpertia:

Version 1: January, 2001

Lower Taxon

Related Synonym(s):


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