Silky Wall Feather-moss - Homalothecium sericeum


The green or golden green main shoots grow closely appressed to the substrate, sometimes reaching many centimetres in length. They have short (less than 1 cm), crowded side branches that curve upwards and inwards when dry, with leaves closely appressed. On wetting, the branches rapidly straighten and the leaves spread outwards. Leaves are 2.5 to 3 mm long, strongly pleated, narrowly spearhead-shaped, widest at the base, and taper evenly to a finely pointed tip. The margins are weakly toothed. Capsules are fairly frequent, 2 to 3 mm long, straight and cylindrical.

Identification difficulty

H. sericeum grows on hard surfaces, both on rocks and tree bark. It favours base-rich rocks and may be abundant on limestone walls and crags. It is also common on trees with base-rich bark, e.g. Ash and Elder, preferring the trunks and larger branches. It is also widespread on brick walls, concrete and other man-made structures.

UK Status

Quite common and widespread in Britain

VC55 Status

Fairly frequent in Leicestershire and Rutland.

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Leicestershire & Rutland Map


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

UK Map