Hello: Can you tell me the difference between the moss
that grows in trees that is gray in color like Spanish moss, and all of
the green so called mosses that grow like a plant or in the ground as an
algae. Are they the same? How are they both called moss? One is an air
dweller and the others are on or in the ground. confused.
"Spanish moss" is a common name for two organism both of which are not true mosses.
It is either the vascular plant species Tillandsia usneoides L. within the family Bromeliacae.
or a non-vascular lichen Ramalina menziesii
Mosses (bryophytes) are non-vascular plants:
Anthony Brach, Ph.D
"Tillandsia usneoides is not a true moss and is unrelated to the plants of
the class Musci (or Bryopsida), to which the genus Sphagnum (mosses that
form peat) belongs. Spanish Moss and the pineapple (Ananas comosus) belong
to division Magnoliophyta , class Liliopsida, order Bromeliales, and to the
plant family Bromeliacae . "
This web site continues the description above in detail:
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Update: June 2012