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753 illustration

Peat moss

Sphagnum fallax

Description:
Peat moss is a perennial bog plant. Individual plants comprise a main stem with two to three spreading branches and two to four hanging branches. The leaves along the stem are made up of two kinds of cells: small, green, living cells (chlorophyllose cells); and large, clear, structural, dead cells (hyaline cells), which have a large water-holding capacity.

Habitat:
Peat moss grows mostly in moist places and accelerates wetland formation due to its capacity to absorb and hold many times its dry weight of water. It is the dominant species in sphagnum bogs. It is found mainly in the Northern Hemisphere.

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