Liverworts Question

For the first time since I moved here 3 years ago I seem to have liverwortsgrowing in my vegetable beds. I know they like moist environments, and perhaps I have been over watering a bit lately. They seem to especially like my dense strawberry bed.

Up until this point I have been ignoring them, but I was wondering if there is any harm in letting the flourish. Wikipedia doesn’t specifically say they are harmful, but I don’t want to take any chances, and perhaps they are beneficial.

Any amateur or professional botanists around who can enlighten me?

I’ve never heard of any negative effects of liverworts. They’re so small they are unlikely to have a significant effect in competing for nutrients with your vegetables. If anything, they may be beneficial by providing ground cover to keep the soil moist and prevent the grow of more aggressive weeds.

They’re notthat small, and appear to be from another planet. :slight_smile:

It’s hard to judge scale from the photo, but they look much smaller than a typical vascular-plant weed. Aside from their size, liverworts lack true roots which would also make them less able to compete for nutrients.

The largest one is about 4 inches from end to end. They grow them big here in Montana. Are they edible?

Apparently some kinds can become weeds in greenhouses, by covering the surface of the growing pots and keeping water and fertilizer from entering the soil. But that may not be much of a problem in an outside garden where the liverworts are not actually covering the soil.

I’ve never heard of anyone eating liverwort. I also haven’t heard of them being particularly toxic. However, this site says:

Why don’t you advance the cause of scientific research by trying some in a salad? :wink:

They don’t look very appetising.

That’s okay. I think I’ll pass… :wink:

You seem to be confused. This is what liverwurst looks like. It is a type of sausage, not something that grows in a garden.