Main page Foliage Sporocarps (flowers) Rhizoids (roots) Control
Liverwort (Marchantia polymorpha) do not have true leaves, instead
they have thalli (thallus in singular form).
Liverwort thalli form a dense mat over the container surface. Thalli
overlap each other, which sometimes resembles shingles on a roof.
Liverwort thalli are covered with gemmae cups and pores, as seen below
(you may need to click on the image to see a larger version).
The pores are the very small holes (look like pin holes) all along the
surface of the thallus. There are too many to count in the image
Gemmae cups are the large bowl-shaped objects. Gemmae cups contain
small asexual propagules that will splash when hit with irrigation or rain
drops. Sven Svenson (Oregon State University) determined that the
propagules can splash up to a distance of 18 inches when hit with irrigation
or rain water. The small propagules will form another plant if it lands
in a suitable environment. This is one of the primary mechanisms by
which liverwort spread.
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