Moss, Liverwort or Hornwort species


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Bryophyte is the collective name for the mosses, liverworts and hornworts. Bryophytes are spore-producing, rather than seed-producing, plants and they are all without flowers.

While there are marked differences between mosses, liverworts and hornworts, they are related closely enough to warrant a single term that includes all three. Bryophytes vary in size from plants only slightly over a millimetre tall to trailing species which grow to strands well over a metre long. Although they are often found in rainforests they can be found in a variety of habitats including arid and alpine areas. They occur most abundantly in relatively unpolluted areas. They can also be found growing on a variety of surfaces (or substrates) ranging from soil, rock, tree trunks, leaves, rotting wood, bones, to old discarded shoes or gloves. Bryophytes don’t have true roots. They have root-like anchoring structures called rhizoids but these do not actively extract minerals and water from the substrate.

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