Roof rotary tooth moss

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Roof rotary tooth moss
Rotary tooth moss Tortula ruralis.jpg

Rotary tooth moss ( Syntrichia ruralis )

Class : Bryopsida
Subclass : Dicranidae
Order : Pottiales
Family : Pottiaceae
Genre : Syntrichia
Type : Roof rotary tooth moss
Scientific name
Syntrichia ruralis
( Hedw. ) F. Weber & D. Mohr
Close-up of the leaves with easily visible glass hairs
rectangular, translucent bright lamina cells on the leaf base

The roof-toothed moss ( Syntrichia ruralis ) is a species of moss that is widespread all over the world and is noticeable for its toothed glass hair on the leaves. It is a xerophytic moss that is highly resistant to dehydration and high temperatures. It can remain viable for up to 14 years in the air-dried state.


Moss , which is quite common in all climatic zones outside the tropics , usually grows in a distinct cushion or cushion shape, but also forms lawns. It grows both in the lowlands and penetrates into the subalpine level of the mountains. Of course it occurs primarily on rocks and earth , but it also colonizes walls, concrete and roofs. It is seldom found even on dead wood or on bark .


The roof rotary tooth moss forms stems that can be up to 8 cm high. Usually, however, these only reach a height of about 2 to 4 cm. They form a loose lawn. The leaves are clumpy heaped at the top of the stem. When wet, they are curved back sparsely, but when dry they appear bent or twisted. The elongated leaves are relatively broadly rounded on the top and have a thorny, toothed, translucent ( hyaline ) glass hair at the tip , which emerges from the leaf in a pointed shape. The leaves are slightly rolled back at the edge almost to the tip. The lamina cells appear light on the leaf base and are rectangular in shape. In the upper half of the leaf, on the other hand, they are rounded and six-sided in shape and are clearly papillary . The elongated capsule is slightly curved and has peristome teeth twisted twice to the left. The capsule stem (the seta ) is colored red.


Das Dach-Drehzahnmoos Syntrichia ruralis (Hedw.) Gaert., Meyer et Scherb. has the following synonyms of the scientific name:

  • Tortula ruraliformis ( Des .) Ingham
  • Tortula ruralis (Hedw.) Gärtn., Meyer & Scherb.
  • Barbula ruralis Hedw.


Web links

Commons : Tortula ruralis  - album with pictures, videos and audio files