African club moss (Selaginella kraussiana) forms extensive mats on damp forest floor. Dispersing quickly, it grows on tree trunks and tolerates a wide range of conditions, including hot, cold and deep shade, although it does need wet ground. Originally from southern Africa, it was first noticed in the wild in New Zealand in 1919. It can form part of a cycle which leads to weed invasion of bush – because it tolerates shady forest floors it smothers native seedlings, opening up the area to other weeds such as vines.
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Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand
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