Great Hairy Screw-moss - Syntrichia ruralis subsp. ruralis


This moss forms bright, golden green, loose cushions, or more extensive, sometimes rather dense turfs 1 to 2 cm tall. The leaves are normally between 4 and 6 mm long, strongly curved away from the stem when moist, giving the shoot a star-like appearance, and become twisted when dry. Individual leaves are somewhat tongue shaped, with a rounded tip and parallel or slightly convex sides which are recurved almost to the tip. The nerve flows outwards into a long, silvery, toothed hair point. The cylindrical capsules are rare.

Identification difficulty

This moss grows on calcareous substrates and on walls, rocks and sandy ground. It is also a characteristic species of old thatch

When to see it

All year round.

UK Status

Common and widespread in most of Britain.

VC55 Status

Common in Leicestershire and Rutland.

Leicestershire & Rutland Map


Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map