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Thread: Sphagnum

  1. #1

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    Red face

    Hello guys =).

    I find myself in need of your great collective wisdom, yet again =).
    This time about sphagnum moss, how can you tell if it's real sphagnum and not some other moss posing as sphagnum?
    [Insert stressing drama music here]
    Is there a trick to pierce this most devious deception?!? =P
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  2. #2

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    Well, most sphagnum comes from other sphagnum. If you have peat/sand with moss growing on it, the odds against this being a sphagnum species are high.

    Although most mosses form some sort of heads, sphagnum heads are larger: fat tufts form at the end of limp strands. If your moss is held rigidly upright, thin bladed, small headed and not obviously wet when the pot is in tray water, again the odds are against it being sphagnum.

    Ig you have dead sphagnum as a part of your potting medium, then there is a chance that whatever moss appears *may* be live LFS, but unless you have this present in your mix, it is highly improbable that you have this species growing.

    Sphagnum is a unique looking form. A websearch will show you many examples of this moss. I will be happy to review any posted photos and give you my opinion of what you have.
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    BobZ's Avatar
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  4. #4
    Somewhat Unstable superimposedhope's Avatar
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    It generally comes in bales or compact cards. If it is dried and dead it will be a golden color, and very britlle and crumbly but once water is added it becomes very flexible and soft. If it is in quantity then I don't know of any mosses that look like it but if you're talking about a little sprout in a pot then sometimes it may be difficult to tell for a little while.

    Joe
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  5. #5

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    Hum hum, but if there are hundred of differend species of sphagnum...do they all look alike then?
    *Puzzled*
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  6. #6

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    Yep, look for big long strands of yellow/red fluffy stuff with big growth heads that the moss grows from. All of them look pretty much alike, but grow in different conditions. I have several types, one is a FAST grower in my terrainium but outside dies fast. Others grow slow outside but die in low light conditions, ect. Once you deal with sphagnum for a long time you'll be able to tell the difference in a blink of an eye.
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