Bryum argenteum (NL: Zilvermos / EN: Silver-moss / DE: Silber-Birnmoos / FR: Bryum d'argent) is perhaps the most recognizable of all Belgian mosses. It forms pale green or almost white, compact tufts or patches which look shiny and silvery grey when dry. The crowded shoots are usually less than 1 cm tall, and the rounded, concave leaves (0.75–1.25 mm long) cause the shoots to look smoothly cylindrical, hardly altered when dry. The nerve ends well below the leaf tip. B. argenteum is widespread and often abundant in disturbed habitats which may become very dry and are usually rich in nutrients such as nitrates. These include soil on and by paths (including cracks between paving slabs), roads, in arable fields, on waste ground and railway lines. It may also be found on stone rather than soil, as on walls, buildings, roofs, and concrete and tarmac.
(info on the species based on: "Mosses and Liverworts of Britain and Ireland - a field guide" published by the British Bryological Society)
Image: Ranst (B) - 31/01/2012
© Johan Dierckx
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