Epithet means "from Oregon." Evergreen, hanging epiphyte. Zones 5 to 8.
description: Oregon spikemoss drapes from trees and is often referred to as (and believed to be) a hanging moss, in the rain forests ofWashington State's Olympic National Park. ("It is not likely that one in a hundred knows that it is not a moss" [Frye 1934].) Trailing, stringy foliage, sometimes reaching a length of 2 ft. (60 cm), readily extends along the trunks and branches of host trees shrouding them with curtains of greenery. The threadlike Selaginella branches are rounded with spi-raled leaves all of one type.
The ground-hugging Selaginella kraussiana establishes quickly and spreads rapidly.
Shades of red and green vary with the seasons and weather on Selaginella moellendorffii.
Mosslike curtains of Selaginella oregana fall like garlands from the tree branches in the rain forest of the Hoh Valley in Washington State's Olympic National Park.
range and habitat: This species is native to coastal British Columbia extending south to California, with concentrations in fog belts and high-rainfall areas. The Olympic National Park, for example, gets more than 140 in. (350 cm) of rain per year, which is pure luxury for encouraging the growth of the Oregon spikemoss. it thrives in the deep shade and, like Polypodium glycyrrhiza, it festoons the big leaf maple (Acer macro-phyllum) and red alder (Alnus rubra). A journey up the park's Hoh River valley leads to a lush display of this pendant native, where joining with mosses, it wraps the visitor in a magical imitation of prehistoric forests.
culture and comments: Because of its demand for high and constant humidity, this species is not normally grown in an average garden. in addition, and with reason, it is rarely available commercially so is a plant to be observed and admired (and definitely photographed) in its native site. Meanwhile, please choose from other selaginellas for legitimate and potentially successful additions to the garden's rare plant collection.
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