Tuesday, 2 February 2016

Starke's Pottia

Yesterday I was a little surprised to find a strong colony of Microbryum starckeanum growing in a somewhat shaded situation at Oxwich Wood. The plants were on bare soil around the exposed roots of a tree at the base of the north-east-facing bluff, just above the splash zone. Most other sites where I've seen this species, although often tucked away, are invariably well illuminated, as reflected in the high Ellenberg value of 8 for Light (see p.22 HERE for explanation). Note the mammilate capsule lids, which help separate Microbryum from Tortula and the distinctive spores, which are essential to check to separate from davallianum. Well worth looking out for this species along the Vale coast, as currently all records are confined to South Gower.

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