Go to National Library of New Zealand Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa
Volume 25, 1892
This text is also available in PDF
(468 KB) Opens in new window
– 297 –

Art. XXXVII.—On some Little-known New Zealand Mosses.

[Read before the Philosophical Institute of Canterbury, 2nd November, 1892.]

Since the publication of the “Handbook of the New Zealand Flora” in 1867 many additions have been made to our mossflora; and it is the object of this paper to put on record as having been found in New Zealand species which have already been published from other countries.

– 298 –

In 1889 Mr. William Bell, of Pine Hill, Dunedin, sent a collection of mosses, chiefly belonging to the family Orthotricheœ, to Mr. Mitten for identification. Mr. Bell has kindly placed Mr. Mitten's letter and notes at my disposal, and supplied me with type specimens of the mosses. Mr. T. Kirk has lately allowed me to examine an interesting collection of seventy-nine Westland mosses, made by Mr. R. Helms, of Greymouth, in 1882. They were sent that year to Dr. Karl Müller for determination, and he decided that thirty-six were new to science. These he has named; but he tells me, in a letter which I have recently received from him, that they have not yet been described, and have not been published.

With the material these collections afforded me, and a few mosses derived from other sources, I am enabled to enumerate fourteen mosses not hitherto included in the New Zealand flora.

Blindia robusta, Hampe.

“Cæspitosa, robusta, sesquiuncialis parce ramosa, folia maxime falcata integerrima, nervo plano evanescente, cellulis linearibus versus apicem densioribus flavescentibus, echlorophyllosis, alaribus grandibus subquadratis hyalinis; seta crassa semiuncialis flavescens, theca subrotundo-ovalis, coriacea fusco-rubra suberecta, operculo conico-obliquo crasso subulto thecam dimidiam æquante pallidiore, dentibus peristomii latioribus membranaceis inflexis plus minusve regulariter divisis. Hab. In Alpibus Austr., Mount Munyang.”—“Linnæa,” 1859–60, p. 627. F. von Müller's “Analytical Drawings of Australian Mosses,” tab. 7.

Autoicous. Male inflorescence bud-like, terminal in a branch below the female inflorescence, bracts obovate abruptly contracted into a lanceolate point, antheridia numerous (23).

Hab. On old moraine at the base of the Waimakariri Glacier; 1889; R. Brown.

I have authentic specimens of B. robusta from Mr. Sullivan, collected in snowy watercourses, Mount Kosciusko, New South Wales, which enabled me to identify this moss.

Grimmia leucophæa, Greville, in Trans. Werner Soc., iv., f. 6. Grimmia leiocarpa, Taylor.

Readily known from the other New Zealand species of Grimmia by its very rough hair-points. A cosmopolitan species.

Hab. On boulders, Dyer's Pass, Lyttelton Hills; No. 114; 1888; T. W. N. B. Banks of the Clutha, Otago; 1891; W. Bell.

– 299 –

I have this moss also from the Barossa Range, South Australia, Tepper; and from Queensland, Bailey.

Anomodon huttonii, Mitten.

“Caulis procumbens, ramis ascendentibus subpinnatim divisus; folia caulina patentia, ovata, acumine lato apice acutiusculo, nervo indistincto supra medium evanido, ramea subcompressa, basi subovata, ligulata, acutiuscula, omnia inferne canaliculato-concava, apicem versus plana, cellulis rotundis obscuris papillosis, margineque crenulata. Hab. New Zealand, Great Barrier Island; Hutton et Kirk.” —Mitten, Journ. Linn. Soc., vol. xiii., p. 309.

As Mr. Mitten's description of this interesting moss was published in his paper on Ceylon Musci, and may be overlooked, I reproduce it here.

[The section below cannot be correctly rendered as it contains complex formatting. See the image of the page for a more accurate rendering.]

The branches are extremely filiform, 4—6 lines long; when dry julaceous and not more than 8/1000in. in diameter, with the leaves closely appressed. When moist the leaves are patent. The cells are large, roundish-hexagonal, and very uniform in size over the whole of the leaf. There are a few long cells on each side of the nerve at its base. The nerve, from a broad base, tapers, and vanishes above the middle of the leaf. Each individual cell projects at the edge of the leaf, causing the margin to be minutely crenulate.

Mr. Kirk, to whom I am indebted for this moss, informs me that he found it but sparingly on the Great Barrier, but freely at Omaha and Matakana, and other places in Auckland.

In “Herb. Bell,” identified by Mr. William Mitten.

Tortula muralis, Hedwig.

A very cosmopolitan plant, but not before recorded as found in Australasia. On chimney, Pine Hill, near Dunedin; W. Bell; No. 649.

Orthotrichum rupestre, Schleich.

On rocks, Mount Earnslaw; 1890; W. Bell. Mount Benger, 4,000ft.-5,000ft., and Pine Hill; W. Bell; No. 265; 1887. Mount Fife, Kaikoura; T. Kirk; 1889. Benmore, alt. 4,000ft.; T. W. N. B.; 1890.

Orthotrichum tasmanicum, H. f. and W. (London Journ. Bot., vii., 1848, p. 27.) Flora Tasm., ii., 184.

On twigs of bushes (especially Discaria toumatou); not uncommon. Lake Wakatipu and Pine Hill; W. Bell; Nos. 438, 646; 1888. Mount Torlesse, 1892; Hunter's Hills, Waimate; Little River, Akaroa, 1887; T. W. N. B.

– 300 –

Zygodon minutus, Hampe and C. Müll. (“Linnæa,” 1856, p. 209). Flora Tasm., ii., 186.

Found in Australia and Tasmania. Paterson's Inlet, Stewart Island; W. Bell; No. 674a; 1889. On the bark of ngaio trees (Myoporum lœtum), Maungamana Bay, Kaikoura; 1889; T.W. N.B.

Eucamptodon inflatus, Mitten. Hypnum inflatum, H. f. and W. Fl. N.Z., ii., tab. 90, fig. 5.

“I send a stem of the Hypnum inflatum of Fl. N.Z. No fruit has been seen. I keep it as a species of Eucamptodon which is almost the same as Dicnemon: but Eucomptodon has an erect capsule; in the other genera it is curved and unequal. These are dicranoid mosses, having no affinity with Hypna of any kind. Eucamptodon inflatus is the finest species yet discovered. In both genera, Dicnemon and Eucamptodon, the primary stem is creeping, from which fertile branches arise.”—W. Mitten in litt.

Great Barrier Island; T. Kirk. Near Auckland; T. F. Cheeseman.

In “Herb. Helms,” identified by Dr. Karl Müller.

Hypnum (Hypnodendron) deflexum, Wilson.

This is Isothecium arbusculum, var. β deflexum, Fl. N.Z., ii., 104; Hypnum deflexum, C. Müll., Syn. ii., p. 680. Mr. Mitten considers this moss distinct from Isothecium arbusculum,” Australian Mosses,”.p. 35.

Found in New South Wales and Tasmania. “Herb. Helms,” No. 3.

Hypnum (Rhynchostegium) huttoni, Hampe.

Nearly allied to Rhynchostegium tenuifolium, Hed. Autoicous, male inflorescence bud-like in the axils of leaves below the female inflorescence.

Westland, “Herb. Helms,” No. 16. Pine Hill, Dunedin; W. Bell; No. 657; 1888. Greymouth; W. J. Gulliver. Barry's Pass, Akaroa; T. W. N. B.; No. 55; 1887.

Pilotrichella billardieri, Hampe (“Linnæa,” 1859, Neckera).

Meteorium billardieri, Mitten, “Australian Mosses,” p. 34.

Found in Gippsland: F. v. M. It very much resembles a large form of M. molle. “Herb. Helms,” No. 41. Kaikoura, No. 13b, identified for me by Dr. Müller. Oxford Bush, North Canterbury; T. W. N. B. Nelson; D. Grant.

– 301 –

Rhizogonium aristatum, Hampe.

“Gracillimum, laxe cæspitosum, unciale, adscendens. Caulis filiformis basi nudus vel foliis parvis remotis ovatis cuspidatis munitus, superne foliis approxumatis, anguste plumiformis flavescens. Folia disticha, oblique inserta, unolatere patenti concava, e basi parce obovata late lanceolata, planiuscula, margine flavescenti limbata, versus apicem remote dentata, nervo lutescente solido aristata, cellulis angulatorotundatis parce incrassatis, pallide diaphanis. Folia perichætialia lanceolato-subulata elongata subintegerrima vel parce denticulata erecta, apice pallida, nervo percursa longius aristata. Seta basilaris erecta sesquiuncialis caulem superans, apice incrassata rubra. Theca læsa horizontalis oblonga annulata peristomio? Lake Pedder, Tasmaniæ; parcissime legit Schuster. Rhizogonio novœ-hollandiœ simillimum, sed foliis limbatis primo visu discernendum.”—“Linnæa,” xl., 1876, p. 314.

Greymouth, in “Herb. Helms,” No. 49. Westland; T. Kirk. Stewart Island, on stems of tree-ferns; W. Bell; No. 715.

Dicranum (Campylopus) capillatus, H. f. and W. Flora Tasm., ii., 172.

A Tasmanian moss nearly allied to Campylopus appressifolius. Westland, in “Herb. Helms,” No. 64.

Dicranum (Campylopus) leptocephalum, C. Müll. (“Linnæa,” 1855, p. 206).

Mitten, in “Musci Austro-Americani,” Jour. Lin. Soc., xii., p. 84, gives this as a synonym of Campylopus introflexus, Hed., and remarks, “C.introflexus is very variable in external appearance—in the colour of the leaves, and in the length and curvature of their white points.” “Herb. Helms,” No. 73.

Bartramia commutata, Hampe.

“Dioica, robusta, vage ramosa, decumbens. Caulis fere ubique rufo-tomentosus, fructifer adscendens, superne radiatus, flavescens, ramis teretibus acutis, caulis masculus subsimplex, apice stellatus. Folia caulina sicca accumbentia humido erecto-patula, e basi contracta concava pluries plicata, late ovato-lanceolata subintegerrima, nervo percursa setaceo-aristata, margine toto revoluto, cellulis abbreviato-parallelogrammicis, nodulis minimis interrupto-punctatis, basi latere velo tenero latiore reflexo, cellulis quadratis reticulato pellucido aucta. Radiorum folia minora, magis pellucida, tenerrime reticulata, evidenter scabra, nervo tereti lutescente in subulam

– 302 –

denticulatam excedente. Folia perichætialia interiora parva, ovato-lanceolata nervosa, brevius aristata, profunde plicata, hyalina, cellulis rectangulis lævibus reticulata. Seta vix uncialis adscendens rubens apice inclinata. Theca junior sphærica, deinde nutans, oblonga, sicca paulisper striata; operculo breve conico obtuso. Peristomium inflexum parvulum sanguineum, dentibus exter. anguste lanceolatis acuminatis dense trabeculatis; intern. cruribus ovato-acuminatis, ciliis brevissimis.

“Mount Grampians; leg. W. Sullivan.

“Syn. Bartramia affinis, Schwæg., tab. 237, mala; nec Hooker, tab. 176. In Tasmania, in montosis versus lacum Pedder, 1875, legit Schuster formam minorem vix biuncialem.”—“Linnæa,” 1876, p. 307.

Nearly allied to B. affinis. Mitten, in “Australian Mosses,” p. 21, considers it a distinct species. Westland, in “Herb. Helms,” No. 68.