Herbs and Other Plant Species of the World's Boreal Forests

World Boreal Trees

Terminology | Pictorial

Lycopodium clavatum
Running Ground Pine

A broad spreading, evergreen clubmoss, growing to a height of 25.5 cm.


Running Ground Pine Distinguishing Features - Leaves: 85 mm long, toothed, tapering to hairlike tip; generally ascending. Cones: cylindrical, 7.6 cm long; one or more on 15 cm long, yellowish stems. Vertical stems: multi-branched, dense leaves. Horizontal stems: branching, interlacing, covering large area; on surface of ground.


Circumboreal; northern Eurasia, Greenland and Labrador to Alaska, south to the northwest United States and Colorado, east through the Great Lakes Region to Virginia; in moist, shaded woodlands, open thickets, rocky slopes, pine forests and mixed woods; occasionally swamp and bog edges; prefers loose, acid soil; characteristic of boreal coniferous forests.


Can be distinguished from other tree like clubmosses by its running habit, and from other running clubmosses by its branching, multiple cones on extremely long stems, and horizontal stem on surface of ground.

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