Juniper haircap moss

Botanical Name : Polytrichium Juniperum
Family: Polytrichaceae
Genus: Polytrichum
Species: P. juniperinum
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Bryophyta
Class: Polytrichopsida
Subclass: Polytrichidae
Order: Polytrichales

Synonyms: Bear’s Bed. Robin’s Eye. Ground Moss. Golden Maidenhair. Female Fern Herb. Rockbrake Herb.

Common Names :Juniper haircap moss,Robin’s Rye, Ground Moss.

Habitat: Juniper haircap moss grow across a wide gradient of habitats but it is most commonly found on dry, acidic, exposed habitats. It is frequent in areas that previously experienced disturbances such as fire and logging. Other areas they occupy are mineral soil, humus and rocks, stumps, banks, trailsides and dry open woods. Although Juniper haircap moss is not usually found in moist or wet environments, it has been found growing on moist woods and other moist sites such as streambanks.

Description:
Juniper haircap moss  is an evergreen and perennial plany. The stems are reddish with grey-green leaves that have a distinctive red-brown tip. This characteristic allows them to be separated from the bristly haircap, a plant that the juniper haircap moss have a close resemblance to; the difference is that the bristly haircap have a green tip. The leaves of juniper haircap moss are lanceolate and upright spreading when dry, and when moist, wide-spreading. Although their growth form can be varied, they generally grow in thin, interwoven mats, and hardly as closely associated individuals. Juniper haircap moss have a well-developed system of tiny tubes for carrying water from the rhizoids to leaves that is uncharacteristic of mosses, resembling the system that has evolved in vascular plants such as ferns, gymnosperms and angiosperms. As a result of this developed system, stems have greater potential for height than in typical mosses.

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Medicinal Uses:
Part Used: Whole herb.

The herb is believed to be a powerful diuretic by herbalists. Because it increases urinary secretions, it is useful in the treatment of urinary obstructions and dropsy, an old term for today’s edema, which is defined by medicinenet as the swelling of tissue due to accumulation of excess water. The plant is also considered to be excellent for long term use because it does not cause nausea.

A very valuable remedy in dropsy as a powerful diuretic, and used with hydragogue cathartics of decided advantage.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/m/moshai51.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polytrichum_juniperinum
http://chestofbooks.com/health/herbs/O-Phelps-Brown/The-Complete-Herbalist/Bears-Bed-Polytrichium-Juniperum.html

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