leafy liverwort

leafy liverwort

plant
also called  scale moss  

      any of numerous species of liverworts (class Hepatopsida), generally of the order Jungermanniales, in which the plant body is prostrate and extends horizontally in leaflike form with an upper and lower surface. About three-quarters of all liverworts species belong to this order.

      Most leafy liverworts are found in moist habitats—in swamps and bogs and in damp forests, where they grow on rotted logs or in damp soil. Others are found in colder environments, and still others are aquatic. The plant's leaves are spirally arranged around the stem, most often in rows of three. The leaves are usually lobed, and those of some species may have toothed or fringed edges and may curve upward. New growth covers the old, which then dies for lack of light.

      The mature gametophyte of the leafy liverwort can be either dioecious (each individual bears either male or female reproductive structures) or monoecious (each individual bears both male and female reproductive structures). The fertilized egg eventually develops into the sporophyte, which remains dependent on the gametophyte for water and nutrients. The sporophyte's spore-containing capsule (sporangium) is usually attached to the gametophyte by an elongate setae. The sporangium ruptures and releases spores, which germinate, ultimately into the gametophyte. The gametophyte remains attached to the substratum by way of filamentous rhizoids.

      The greatest number and variety of leafy liverworts are found in tropical Central and South America and in the Malay Archipelago. Plagiochila, a very species-rich genus, is found throughout the world. The large family Lejeuneaceae, which is extremely diverse in the tropics, shows an extraordinary variety of form and ecology. Many species of Frullania are able to tolerate drying and can revive after drought, thus allowing them to grow in areas where rains are seasonal.

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Universalium. 2010.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • leafy liverwort — noun moss like liverwort with tiny scalelike leaves; usually epiphytic • Syn: ↑scale moss • Hypernyms: ↑liverwort, ↑hepatic • Member Holonyms: ↑Jungermanniales, ↑order Jungermanniales * * * …   Useful english dictionary

  • leafy liverwort — noun A liverwort plant belonging to the order Jungermanniales. the inner layer (of nearly equally large cells) lacks the regular semiannular or annular thickenings of most other leafy liverworts …   Wiktionary

  • leafy liverwort — noun Date: 1922 any of an order (Jungermanniales) of usually epiphytic liverworts with a leafy gametophyte that has one ventral and two dorsal rows of leaves on the stem …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • liverwort — /liv euhr werrt , wawrt /, n. any mosslike plant of the class Hepaticae, growing chiefly on damp ground, rocks, or on tree trunks and helping the decay of logs and the disintegration of rocks. [bef. 1100; ME; late OE liferwyrt. See LIVER1, WORT2] …   Universalium

  • liverwort — noun /ˈlɪv.ə.wɜːt,ˈlɪv.ɚ.wɝːt,ˈlɪv.ɚ.wɔːrt/ A bryophyte (includes mosses, liverworts, and hornworts) with a leafy stem or leafless thallus characterized by a dominant gametophyte stage and a lack of stomata on the sporophyte stage of the life… …   Wiktionary

  • liverwort — noun Date: before 12th century 1. any of a class (Hepaticae) of bryophytic plants characterized by a thalloid gametophyte or sometimes an upright leafy gametophyte that resembles a moss 2. hepatica …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • liverwort — n. any small leafy or thalloid bryophyte of the class Hepaticae, of which some have liver shaped parts …   Useful english dictionary

  • Marchantiophyta — Not to be confused with Hepatica, a flowering plant that may also be called liverwort . Liverworts Temporal range: 472–0 Ma …   Wikipedia

  • bryophyte — bryophytic /bruy euh fit ik/, adj. /bruy euh fuyt /, n. Bot. any of the Bryophyta, a phylum of nonvascular plants comprising the true mosses and liverworts. [1875 80; < NL Bryophyta name of the group; see BRYO , PHYTE] * * * Any of the green,… …   Universalium

  • plant — plantable, adj. plantless, adj. plantlike, adj. /plant, plahnt/, n. 1. any member of the kingdom Plantae, comprising multicellular organisms that typically produce their own food from inorganic matter by the process of photosynthesis and that… …   Universalium

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