World of Mosses website

Robert Muma's Moss Paintings & Sketches


World of Mosses Fantasy
(Cover of Wildflower Magazine)

    "This is a fantasy expression of the world of mosses done in pen and ink and watercolours, from sketches made with the aid of a dissecting microscope. In this close encounter, we have opened the curtains onto a stage where the players are miniature forms of plant life in prehistoric garb.
    The BRYOPHYTA (mosses and liverworts) were the first land-based form of plant life we know to have evolved from the green algae which is still commonly found in pools of stagnant water. Under the microscope, green alga is barely distinguishable from protonema which is the first stage in the development of moss spores into mature plants. The protonema may be sometimes found as a greenish film covering the substrate surrounding the newly matured gametophyte (moss plant). The specimens included in this montage are, left to right, counter clockwise: Funaria hygrometrica Cord Moss; Phascum cuspidatum; Physcomitrium pyriforme Top Moss or Urn Moss; and a Brachythecium species which can be distinguished with certainty only with a good lens. These are all common garden mosses which may be found on disturbed soil along garden paths, rock gardens, in green houses, or in the case of Funaria, on old campfire sites or ash heaps. The magnification of these examples is roughly 8-10 times their natural size."

(cover of Wildflower magazine, Winter 1992)


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