Common Liverwort – Marchantia polymorpha subsp ruderalis



It also goes by the names of Mountain Liverwort and Star-headed Liverwort, and it is one of the largest thallose liverworts. It spreads and branches across substrates, and in younger plants it is pale or yellowish-green, becoming brown or purplish as it ages. Note how the plant is covered in conspicuous holes or air pores, and cup-shaped gemma receptacles. Male plants have stalked, flat-topped, disc-like receptacles with rounded lobes, whilst female receptacles are similar, but with lobes which are finger-like.

It can be seen all year round, with the reproductive structures appearing in June. This species is almost always found in man-made habitats, especially gardens, greenhouses, and garden nurseries where it can become a troublesome weed growing in plant pots. It is also found on waste ground, footpaths and brickwork, and also by streams and rivers. It is abundant and widespread throughout.