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moss

moss / môs/ • n. 1. a small flowerless green plant that lacks true roots, growing in low carpets or rounded cushions in damp habitats and reproducing by means of spores released from stalked capsules: the trees are overgrown with vines and moss | the bog is home to rare mosses. • Class Musci, division Bryophyta. ∎  used in names of algae, lichens, and higher plants resembling moss, e.g., reindeer moss, Ceylon moss, Spanish moss. 2. Scot. & N. English a bog, esp. a peat bog. • v. [usu. as adj.] (mossed) cover with moss. DERIVATIVES: moss·like / -ˌlīk/ adj.

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moss

moss Any of c.14,000 species of small, simple non-flowering green plants that typically grow in colonies, often forming dense carpets. They reproduce by means of spores produced in a capsule on a long stalk. The spores germinate into branching filaments, from which buds arise that grow into moss plants. Mosses grow on soil, rocks and tree trunks in a wide variety of habitats, especially in shady, damp places. See also alternation of generations; bryophyte

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moss

moss
A. (dial.) bog, swamp OE.
;
B. small plant of the class Musci. XIV. OE. mos = MLG., (M)Du., OHG. mos (G. moos) bog, moss:- Gmc. *musam, rel. to ON. mosi wk. m. bog, moss, and further to OE. mēos, OHG. mios (G. mies) moss (:- Gmc. *meus-), ON. mýrr MIRE, and outside Gmc. to L. muscus, OSl. mǔchǔ moss:- IE. *mus-). The application in Eng. to the plant may be due to ON. mosi.

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Moss (city, Norway)

Moss (môs), city (1995 pop. 25,253), capital of Østfold co., SE Norway, a port on the Oslofjord. It is a commercial, industrial, and tourist center, with shipyards, sawmills, textile factories, metalworks, and breweries. On Aug. 14, 1814, the convention establishing the personal union of Sweden and Norway was signed there.

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moss (in botany)

moss, any species of the class Bryopsida, in which the liverworts are sometimes included. Mosses and liverworts together comprise the division Bryophyta, the first green land plants to develop in the process of evolution. It is believed that they evolved from certain very primitive vascular plants and have not given rise to any other type of plant. Their rootlike rhizomes and leaflike processes lack the vascular structure (xylem and phloem) of the true roots, stems, and leaves found in higher plants. Although limited to moist habitats because they require water for fertilization, bryophytes are usually extremely hardy and grow everywhere except in the sea. Mosses, the more complex class structurally, usually grow vertically rather than horizontally, like the liverworts. The green moss plant visible to the naked eye, seldom over 6 in. (15.2 cm) in height, is the gametophyte generation (see reproduction). Except for the commercially valuable sphagnum or peat moss, mosses are of little direct importance to humans. They are of some value in soil formation and filling in of barren habitats (e.g., dried lakes) prior to the growth of higher plants and also provide food for certain animals. Unrelated plants sharing the name moss include the club moss, flowering moss, or pyxie (of the diapensia family), Irish moss, or carrageen (see algae), reindeer moss (a lichen), and Spanish moss. Mosses are classified in the division Bryophyta, class Bryopsida.

See A. J. Grout, Moss Flora of North America (3 vol., 1928–39, repr. 1972).

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moss

moss The common name for a plant belonging to the class Musci.

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moss

mossacross, boss, Bros, cos, cross, crosse, doss, dross, emboss, en brosse, floss, fosse, gloss, Goss, joss, Kos, lacrosse, loss, moss, MS-DOS, Ross, toss •LaosÁyios Nikólaos, chaos •Eos • Helios •Chios, Khíos •Lesbos • straw boss • Phobos • rooibos •extrados • kudos • reredos • intrados •Calvados • Argos • Lagos • logos •Marcos • telos •Delos, Melos •Byblos • candyfloss •tholos, Vólos •bugloss • omphalos • Pátmos •Amos, Deimos, Sámos •Demos • peatmoss • cosmos • Los Alamos • Lemnos • Hypnos • Minos •Mykonos • tripos • topos • Atropos •Ballesteros, pharos, Saros •Imbros • criss-cross • rallycross • Eros •albatross • monopteros • Dos Passos •Náxos • Hyksos • Knossos • Santos •benthos •bathos, pathos •ethos • Kórinthos

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