Huperzia selago
Fir clubmoss
Image of Huperzia selago

Photo by John V. Freudenstein 

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Key Characteristics

Small clubmoss (10 cm) of sandy soils in a variety of habitats; low creeping habitat; leaves broadest at base, without teeth; sporangia borne in leaf axils.

Status and Rank

  • State Status: SC
  • State Rank: S3
  • Global Rank: G5


County NameNumber of OccurrencesYear Last Observed
Distribution map for Huperzia selago

Updated 7/21/2017. Information is summarized from MNFI's database of rare species and community occurrences. Data may not reflect true distribution since much of the state has not been thoroughly surveyed.


Often a plant of edges, occurring along the sandy margins of seasonally inundated wetlands and especially in disturbed soil along roadsides, excavations, and borrow pits. It is also occasionally found in low shoreline dunes.

Natural Community Types


For each species, lists of natural communities were derived from review of the nearly 6,500 element occurrences in the MNFI database, in addition to herbarium label data for some taxa. In most cases, at least one specimen record exists for each listed natural community. For certain taxa, especially poorly collected or extirpated species of prairie and savanna habitats, natural community lists were derived from inferences from collection sites and habitat preferences in immediately adjacent states (particularly Indiana and Illinois). Natural communities are not listed for those species documented only from altered or ruderal habitats in Michigan, especially for taxa that occur in a variety of habitats outside of the state.

Natural communities are not listed in order of frequency of occurrence, but are rather derived from the full set of natural communities, organized by Ecological Group. In many cases, the general habitat descriptions should provide greater clarity and direction to the surveyor. In future versions of the Rare Species Explorer, we hope to incorporate natural community fidelity ranks for each taxon.

Associated Plants

Balsam fir, northern white cedar, white spruce, black spruce, larch, ground juniper, alder, bog clubmoss, blueberry, beak-rush, sundew, snowberry, bunchberry, bluebead lily, twinflower, shinleaf, naked miterwort, grass-of-Parnassus, shining clubmoss, bracken fern, Labrador tea, sphagnum moss, and haircap moss.


Primarily requires maintenance of hydrology for intermittent wetlands, as well as protection from direct impacts such as ORV damage. This species is obviously opportunistic, given its occurrence in artificially disturbed sites, such as borrow pits, which appear to function as refugia in areas where colonization habitat may not be available.

General Survey Guidelines

Random meander search covers areas that appear likely to have rare taxa, based on habitat and the judgement of the investigator.

Survey Methods

Page Citation

Michigan Natural Features Inventory. 2007. Rare Species Explorer (Web Application). Available online at [Accessed Mar 18, 2018]


Survey References

Technical References

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