A Special Little Selaginella From Mindo, Ecuador

by Chuck Nishihira

Along one of our hikes in the area around Mindo, Ecuador we came upon this charming and pretty little species of Selaginella.  We only saw it once in two good sized patches on the ground. It grew very close to the ground as a small trailer. As you can see in the photos, what really stands out are the white tips. I kept looking for other pockets of this special little one, but as I mentioned we only saw it this one time. I’ve always been curious as to if a plant like this is rare or just locally uncommon. Or maybe it is just a sport of a more common species.  I did keep my eyes open for Selaginellas with similar growing habits as well, but again nothing was found.

I imagine it could be used to great effect in a terrarium a tiny carpet with the wonderful white starry tips.