West Highland Flora

Alpine Clubmoss

Diphasiastrum alpinum

Former names: Diphasium alpinum, Lycopodium alpinum

Diphasium alpinum

Photo Carl Farmer
18 Sep 2001 Sligachan, Skye

Frequent on high exposed ground, above about 300 m, among grass, heather or moss, or in stony places, sometimes carpeting the ground.

Cones c 1-2 cm.  Leaves c 2-4 mm.

ID: The strongly glaucous colour is not found in any other clubmoss.  The very rare D complanatum can be slightly glaucous and D alpinum can sometimes be rather yellowish-green.  In such cases they can be told apart by D alpinum having the upright branches only slightly flattened; they are strongly flattened (and less upright) in D comlanatum.

Other features: Has long creeping stems from which arise upright fertile and sterile branches, the fertile ones being those with spreading bracts in the picture, with spore-cases in the angle of the bracts.  Sterile branches have leaves closely appressed to stem in 4 rows, these are the bright glaucous ones in the picture.


Diphasiastrum alpinum

Photo Carl Farmer
13 Jul 2004 Trotternish Ridge, Skye
Picture c 2.3 cm wide

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