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Lycopodium phlegmarioides


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Family Lycopodiaceae

Plants terrestrial , on rock, or epiphytic. Roots emerging near origin , or growing through cortex and emergent some distance from origin. Horizontal stems present or absent, mainly protostelic, in some species becoming actino- or plectostelic, on substrate surface or subterranean , or forming stolons. Upright shoots simple or branched, usually conspicuously leafy at least at base ; abscising gemmae formed by reduced lateral shoots. Lateral shoots present or absent, simple or branched, branching pattern dichotomous and sometimes pseudomonopodial; leaves uniform or dimorphic or trimorphic. Upright and lateral shoots round or flat in cross section ; leaves on subterranean parts flat, appressed , nonphotosynthetic, and scalelike; leaves on aerial parts appressed, ascending , or spreading , with 1 central unbranched vein , needlelike to lanceolate to ovate , remote to dense and imbricate, with or without basal and/or mucilage canals. Strobili sessile or stalked , upright, nodding , or pendent. Sporangia solitary, adaxial near leaf base or axillary ; subtending leaves (sporophylls) unmodified and photosynthetic to much modified, nonphotosynthetic, reduced, and aggregated in strobili; sporangia reniform to globose , thick-walled with hundreds of spores, outer walls variously modified. Spores all 1 kind, trilete, thick-walled, surfaces pitted to small-grooved, rugulate, or reticulate . Gametophytes subterranean and nonphotosynthetic or surficial and photosynthetic.

Genera 10--15, species 350--400 (7 genera, 27 species in the flora ) : worldwide.

The Lycopodiaceae are an extremely diverse , ancient family . The family may contain even more than the estimated 400 species because the tropical members and the very large genus Phlegmariurus are still poorly known. The relationships among genera of Lycopodiaceae are not well understood because large evolutionary gaps exist among most genera. Some of the genera, notably Diphasiastrum, Huperzia, and Lycopodiella, exhibit extensive interspecific hybridization, which has caused much taxonomic confusion in the past. Differences in expressions of many of the generic characters are subtle, and some of the characters are microscopic.[1]

Genus Lycopodium

Plants mainly trailing on ground . Roots emerging from point of origin on underside of main stems . Horizontal stems on substrate surface or subterranean , long-creeping. Upright shoots scattered along horizontal stem, 5--16 mm diam., round or flat in cross section , unbranched or with 1--4 lateral branchlets . Leaves not imbricate, linear to linear-lanceolate; leaves on horizontal stems scattered, appressed , membranous; leaves on lateral branchlets mostly 6-ranked or more, monomorphic with few exceptions, appressed, ascending to spreading , margins entire to dentate . Gemmiferous branchlets and gemmae absent. Strobili single and sessile or multiple and pedunculate , apex blunt to acute; peduncle, when present, conspicuously leafy; sporophylls extremely reduced, much shorter than peduncle or stem leaves. Sporangia reniform . Spores reticulate , sides at equator convex , angles acute. Gametophytes nonphotosynthetic, mycorrhizal, subterranean, flat and irregularly button-shaped, with ring meristem around circumference. x = 34.

Species 15--25: mainly temperate and subarctic .

In striking contrast to Diphasiastrum, Huperzia, and Lycopodiella, interspecific hybridization is practically unknown in Lycopodium. Many of the species now recognized in Lycopodium have been segregated from Lycopodium clavatum, L. annotinum, and L. jussiaei Desvaux ex Poiret. The three groups given in the key below should probably be treated as subgenera .[2]


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Publishing author : Gaudich. Publication : Voyage Autour du Monde ... sur les Corvettes de S.M. l'Uranie et la Physicienne. Botanique 1830 (6 Mar. 1830)

Similar Species

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Members of the genus Lycopodium

ZipcodeZoo has pages for 51 species, subspecies, varieties, forms, and cultivars in this genus:

L. alpinum (Alpine Club Moss) · L. annotinum (Clubmoss) · L. annotinum f. groen;andicum (Clubmoss) · L. annotinum pungens (Stiff Clubmoss) · L. apodum (Meadow Spike Moss) · L. argenteum (Northern Sennet) · L. carinatum (Club Moss) · L. cernua (Lycopodium) · L. circinale (Blackfin Barracuda) · L. clavatum (Common Club Moss) · L. clavatum contiguum (Staghorn Club-Moss) · L. clavatum f. brevipedunculatum (Staghorn Club-Moss) · L. clavatum f. incurvum (Common Club Moss) · L. clavatum f. robustinus (Staghorn Club-Moss) · L. clavatum var. aristatum (Staghorn Club-Moss) · L. clavatum var. clavatum (Running Clubmoss) · L. clavatum var. raddianum (Staghorn Club-Moss) · L. complanatum (Plants) · L. complanatum complanatum (American Clubmoss) · L. complanatum f. canadense (Christmas Green) · L. dendroideum (Tree Groundpine) · L. deuterodensum (Bushy Clubmoss) · L. digitatum (Fan Club-Moss) · L. douglasii (Douglas' Spikemoss) · L. fastigiatum (Mountain Clubmoss) · L. habereri (Haberer's Clubmoss) · L. hickeyi (Hickey's Clubmoss) · L. issleri (Issler's Clubmoss) · L. lagopus (One-Cone Clubmoss) · L. longifolium (Pacific Threadfin) · L. lycopodiella (Lycopodiella) · L. mirabile (Thread-Fishes) · L. nudum (Clubmosses) · L. obscurum (Ground Pine) · L. obscurum f. dendroideum (Flat-Branch Tree Club-Moss) · L. obscurum f. foliaceum (Flat-Branch Tree Club-Moss) · L. obscurum f. parvispicatum (Ground Pine) · L. phlegmaria (Queensland Tassel-Fern) · L. proniflorum (Mullet) · L. pungens (Stiff Clubmoss) · L. sabinaefolium sitchense (Sitka Clubmoss) · L. sabinifolium (Ground-Fir) · L. scariosum (Spreading Clubmoss) · L. sitchense (Alaskan Clubmoss) · L. tristachyum (Deep-Root Clubmoss) · L. venustulum (Hairtip Clubmoss) · L. volubile (Climbing Clubmoss) · L. x habereri (Hybrid) · L. × issleri (Issler's Clubmoss) · L. x zeilleri (Zeiller's Clubmoss) · L. zeilleri (Deeproot Clubmoss)

More Info

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Further Reading

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Data Sources

Accessed through GBIF Data Portal December 02, 2007:



  1. Warren H. Wagner Jr. & Joseph M. Beitel "Lycopodiaceae". in Flora of North America Vol. 2. Oxford University Press. Online at [back]
  2. "Lycopodium". in Flora of North America Vol. 2. Oxford University Press. Online at [back]
Last Revised: 2014-05-09