Lycopodiella cernua – Staghorn Clubmoss
Scientific Name: Lycopodiella cernua
Common Names: Staghorn Clubmoss, Wawae'iole, Christmas Tree Clubmoss, Nodding Club-moss
Growth Habit: Subshrub, Herb/Forb
Hawaii Native Status: Native (indigenous)
Flower Color: Non-flowering
Height: Up to 39 inches (1 m) tall or more
Description: The plants are terrestrial and spread by creeping horizontal stems up to 16 feet (5 m) long or more. The branchlets (upright stems) are green to yellow-green, repeatedly branched like deer antlers, and covered with spirals or whorls of tiny leaves. The leaves are shiny, green to yellow-green, narrowly triangular to linear-awl-shaped, point-tipped, and curved toward the stem tip. The strobili (cone-like reproductive spore bodies) at the stem tips are pale yellow, cylindrical in shape, and nodding. The plants look and feel like miniature Christmas trees.
Here in Hawaii, Staghorn Clubmoss grows in bogs and in wet to mesic (moderately wet) forests.
Kingdom: Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom: Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Division: Lycopodiophyta – Lycopods
Family: Lycopodiaceae – Club-moss family
Genus: Lycopodiella Holub – clubmoss
Species: Lycopodiella cernua (L.) Pic. Serm. – staghorn clubmoss