Huperzia (incl. Phlegmaria, Phlegmariurus, Phylloglossum) Lycopodium (incl. Austrolycopodium, Dendrolycopodium, Diphasiastrum, Diphasium, Lateristachys, Lycopodiastrum, Pseudodiphasium, Pseudolycopodium, Spinulum)
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The Lycopodiaceae (class Lycopodiopsida, order Lycopodiales) are a family of vascular plants, including all of the core clubmosses, comprising three accepted genera (Huperzia, Lycopodiella and Lycopodium) and ca 400 known species. These plants bear spores on specialized structures at the apex of a shoot; they resemble a tiny battle club, from which the common name derives. They are non-flowering and do not produce seeds.
The genera Huperzia, Phlegmariurus and Phylloglossum, the species of which were generally included in a more broadly defined Lycopodium in older classifications, are now all placed in Huperzia although some authors prefer to separate these in the family Huperziaceae; they differ in producing spores in small lateral structures in the leaf axils. There is as yet no consensus on the recognition of Huperziaceae as a separate family; a more broadly defined Lycopodiaceae, including these genera, is still recognized in most general classifications.
The species within this family generally have chromosome counts of n=34. A notable exception are the species in Lycopodium subgenus Diphasiastrum, which have counts of n=23.
- The running clubmosses (Lycopodium subgenus Diphasiastrum) have long been used as greenery for Christmas decoration.
- The spores have long been used as a flash powder. See Lycopodium powder.
- The spores have been used by violin makers for centuries as a pore filler.
- In Cornwall, club mosses gathered during certain lunar phases were historically used as a remedy for eye disease.
- Thiselton-Dyer, Thomas F. (1889). The Folk-lore of Plants.
- Wagner, W. H. Jr. & J. M. Beitel. 1992. Generic classification of modern North American Lycopodiaceae. Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 79: 676-686.
- Lycopodiaceae in Flora of North America
- Christenhusz, M. J. M. & Byng, J. W. (2016). "The number of known plants species in the world and its annual increase". Phytotaxa. Magnolia Press. 261 (3): 201–217. doi:10.11646/phytotaxa.261.3.1.
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