Liverwort


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Liverwort: A large group of plants

Of the approximately 16,000 moss species worldwide, around 10,000 belong to the group of liverworts (Marchantiophyta). It is in addition to the horn and Laubmoosen the species richest of the three moss groups. Liver moss has no roots and is often overgrown by other plants. For this reason, it prefers to grow in places where the pressure of competition from other plants is relatively low - such as in the shade. Although liverworts prefer damp locations, they are very resistant: even dehydration of the plant can remain without serious consequences for a long time. The liver moss absorbs its nutrients predominantly via the precipitation and less from the soil.
Liver moss has some features that distinguish it from the other two moss classes, especially the fleshy roundish leaves, which can become quite large depending on the species and location. The plant cells of most liverwort species contain so-called oil bodies - small aggregations of chemical compounds in the form of droplets. Many liverworts therefore exude a characteristic odor. Their lifespan is relatively short compared to other mosses.

Incidentally, the name Lebermoos has its origins in the Middle Ages. At that time, various types of liverwort such as marchantia were added to the wine to relieve liver trouble - according to the motto "the same heals something similar".
Many species such as the Fountain Liver Moss multiply asexually. In the plant body so-called brooder cups form. Here, lenticular broods grow up, which are washed away by raindrops, for example. In this way, the liverwort can spread quickly around the mother plant.

Occurrence in the garden

The main focus of liverworts is in moist and warm areas. Especially in tropical rainforests, but also in Central Europe, there are a considerable number of such plants, such as the well-known Fountain Liverwort (Marchantiidae). Liver mosses occur predominantly where moist weather and high humidity prevail. On compacted and wet soils, the plant grows particularly well, since it has little competition here. Liver moss is often found on the lawn, in beds and pots, as well as in joints of paving stones. In addition, the moss grows very often on the potting soil of container plants that you can buy, for example, in the garden center - and this way, the liverwort is usually also introduced into the garden, if it did not already occur there anyway. For this reason, remove the upper soil layer generously before placing the new plant in the garden.

liverwort

Liver moss carries on the leaves round brood cups, in which the offspring grows up

Remove liverwort from the garden

As rootless spore plants, you can easily scrape the unwanted liverworts out of your pots and beds with a hoe or by hand. However, this does not prevent new liverwort from regrowing in the foreseeable future. Anti-moss remedies are generally not recommended as they only combat the symptoms without eliminating the cause of moss growth. In addition, they usually have little effect on liverworts.
On insensitive pavement surfaces, you can remove the unwanted liver moss quite well with a flaming device or an electric weed brush. A fight against liverwort in the lawn - as with lawn moss - works best with a scarifier.

Eliminate causes of liverwort

Anyone who lives in a region with high rainfall must expect that the liverwort will return within a short time, once it has been eliminated. Although you can do nothing against the climate - but against permanently moist soil that offers the liverwort ideal growth conditions. In particular, very humus-rich soils are quickly repopulated, since their surface remains moist for long after rainfall. Compaction in the subsoil also causes the water to drain badly and the competing plants can not develop well.
The patent remedy for liver moss is therefore to eliminate the soil compaction in the bed or lawn and additionally sprinkle the soil surface about two inches high with building sand. It quickly transports the moisture into the ground and is dry again within a short time. Shaded paved areas can do wonders, such as stacking a shady tree so that the liver moss overgrows more sunlight. If the liverwort persists in your flowerpots, you should remove it with a thin layer of soil and then cover the bale surface with a mulch layer of gravel.

Liverwort extract for plant strengthening

But liverwort can also be useful: an extract from liverwort, for example, is often used by organic gardeners as a natural plant tonic.It prevents, with regular use, various fungal diseases such as, for example, powdery mildew and powdery mildew on fruit, vegetables and ornamental plants. The remedy is also effective against the gray rot on strawberries, grapevines and peppers as well as against rust diseases on fruit trees and roses. Snails also seem to avoid plants that have been sprayed with liverwort extract - although hobby gardeners have had quite opposite experiences on this point.
For the production, the plant material is washed and then dried. The moss is then minced in a blender with 70 percent alcohol. One day later, filter the liquid and dilute it with 100 milliliters of distilled water. An even simpler method against, for example, nudibranches is soaking the liverwort overnight in a watering can with water. The resulting juice can now be poured onto the salad.

Video Board: NEET BIO - Bryophytes, liverworts..

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