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Liverworts are everywhere — from inner cities to the remotest wilderness!

However, they are small plants that are easily overlooked growing in pavement cracks and hiding in damp shady spots. Despite their diminutive size they are making a big impact on our understanding of the evolution of plants.

Liverworts are small flowerless plants with leaf-like lobes called a thallus, which looks like a lobed liver - hence their common name. It is estimated there are 6000-8000 species of liverworts and they provide important microhabitats for insects and micro-organisms. Discover more in the BBS Field Guide of Mosses and Liverworts of Britain and Ireland.


Participants in The Great British Liverwort Hunt are searching for two species of common liverworts. But what exactly is a liverwort?

In the video below, Alex Summers from the Cambridge University Botanic Garden discusses liverwort lineages, some of the challenges of growing plants for a research collection and diversity in UK bryophytes. ..