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Tetraphis geniculata Girgensohn ex Milde [Tetraphidaceae]

Most or all of the description written below was based upon: Norris 52279; Siskiyou County, California, On moist, diffusely lit log between Tickner Creek and Blue Granite Lake. Elev. 1100=1700 m.

Plants in green to rusty green tufts, sometimes so closely growing as to appear as cusions, to 3 cm high. Leaves scale-like at plant base, becoming larger on mature portions of the plant where they become 1–1.5 mm long, somewhat distorted or almost unchanged when dry, spreading when moist. Mature leaves keeled and obscurely three-ranked, 5–8: 1, not plicate nor fragile, ovate- lanceolate. Median leaf cells very irregular in size and shapes, not in regular rows, smooth, to 15 µm wide but with some isolated cells nearly twice as large as adjacent ones, nearly isodiametric throughout the leaf without differentiation of alar, basal or terminal regions, unistratose throughout. Costa ending several cells below apex, not tapered from base to its terminus Costa cross-section homogeneous, with 3 layers of undifferentiated cells with neither stereid bands nor guide cells. Leaf margins plane to erect, entire, unistratose throughout. Rhizoids light brown, to 20 µm wide at base, closely roughened on outer walls. monopodially branched. Stem cross-section rounded-triangular with a 1–2 cell thick stereome surrounding a rather thick-walled medulla about 4 cells in radial diameter but with no central strand. Axillary hairs to 300 µm long, of 5–6 similar cylinder cells with no basal brown cell. Plant regularly with gammae present in splash cups defined by a dense rosettoid array of almost orbicular leaves radiating from the stem tips.
    Autoicous with perigonia terminating short branches arising from the mostly buried bases of the perichaetial plants. Perichaetial leaves markedly longer than vegetative leaves, ending in an obtuse, abrupt apex. Monosetous with the setae to 10 mm, yellow-brown to brown, somewhat arcuate at middle. Urn erect and symmetrical, smooth to very slightly wrinkled, to 3.5 mm long, 4–5: 1, not strumose. Operculum long conic. Annulus not differentiated. Peristome teeth 4, erect when dry, slightly spreading when moist, triangular and brown, about three times as long as basal width, deeply inserted below capsule mouth, to 400 µm long, vertically striate proximally but at least somewhat papillose distally. Exothecial cells thin-walled, rectangular, to 25 µm wide, not in regular vertical rows, quite irregular in size and shape, rectangular 2–4: 1. Stomates absent. Spores smooth to minutely papillose, to 10 µm.

The specimen used in this treatment differs from the literature on T pellucid and may be T geniculata
   1. The rhizoids seem to be confined to the stem bases and the surface of the largest rhizoids is strongly roughened.
   2. The vegetative leaves do not end in a somewhat aciculate apex.
   3. The exothecial cells are very thin-walled even on quite old capsules.
   4. The irregular arrangement of the cells of the leaf, both the great size differentiation and the lack of linearity of these cells.

Mail a correction to Paul Wilson ·
LiteratureChristy and Wagner 1996.
NotesChristy and Wagner (1996) report a California occurrence for Tetraphis geniculata, however, we have not confirmed the report with a voucher specimen. Tetraphis pellucida is confirmed for California. However, both species are known to occur in mixed populations in the Pacific Northwest. While we have excluded this species, it is still possible that it will be documented for California. Excluded by Malcolm et al. 2009. Not yet found in CA but known from OR.
   

Elevation by latitude plot for Tetraphis geniculata
   in California

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