- any of the Bryophyta, a phylum of nonvascular plants comprising the true mosses and liverworts.
Origin of bryophyte
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
- any plant of the phyla Bryophyta (mosses), Hepatophyta (liverworts), or Anthocerophyta (hornworts), having stems and leaves but lacking true vascular tissue and roots and reproducing by spores
C19: New Latin, from Greek bruon moss + -phyte
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Word Origin and History for bryophyte
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
- A member of a large group of seedless green plants including the mosses, liverworts, and hornworts. Bryophytes lack the specialized tissues xylem and phloem that circulate water and dissolved nutrients in the vascular plants. Bryophytes generally live on land but are mostly found in moist environments, for they reproduce by spores that require water for transport. In contrast to the vascular plants, the gametophyte (haploid) generation of bryophytes constitutes the larger plant form, while the small sporophyte (diploid) generation grows on or within the gametophyte and depends upon it for nutrition.
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