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Published In: Species Muscorum Frondosorum 5(2): 25. 1830. (Sp. Musc. Frond.) Name publication detailView in Biodiversity Heritage Library

Project Name Data (Last Modified On 2/24/2011)
Acceptance : Accepted
Project data     (Last Modified On 2/24/2011)

As treated here the Mniaceae include the Rhizogoniaceae, but exclude the genus Plagiomnium. The Mniaceae and Rhizogoniaceae are usually separated on the basis of perichaetial position and growth habit (Mniaceae terminal and acrocarpic, Rhizogoniaceae lateral or basal and pleurocarpic). Koponen (1988) re‑interpreted the position of the archegonia in the Rhizogoniaceae as terminal on short, fertile shoots or branches and pointed out the growth habit of the family is determinate. There is little else that separates the families, but Koponen (1988) used the presence a smooth (Rhizogoniaceae) vs toothed (Mniaceae) costa to maintain two families. Toothed costae, however, are not a consistent feature of even Mnium (see e.g., M. spinulosum or M. heterophyllum). Furthermore this classification separates genera (e.g. Rhizogonium and Leptotheca) that otherwise appear very close. A very different classification was proposed by Buck and Goffinet (2000) who recognized both the Mniaceae and Rhizogoniaceae, and placed them in different orders (Bryales and Rhizogoniales).


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Plants small to large, erect, dark‑green, green, or yellowish green in tufts or mats. Stems simple, forked or branching at base; stem epidermis of Mnium-type (Koponen 1968); rhizoids sparse and restricted to stem base or dense and occurring throughout the stem, macronemata  rhizoids present, micronemata rhizoids absent. Leaves spirally arranged or distichous, linear‑lanceolate, elliptic or ovate; margins uni‑ or multistratose, bordered or elimbate, uni‑ or bi-serrate; costae single, strong, internally differentiated, smooth or toothed at back; upper cells short, hexagonal to isodiametric, alar cells not to weakly differentiated. Synoicous, autoicous, or dioicous. Perichaetia terminal, lateral, or basal. Setae elongate. Opercula rostrate. Peristome double. Calyptrae cucullate.


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