are all embryophytes ('land plants') that are non-vascular: they have
tissues and enclosed reproductive systems, but they lack vascular
tissue that circulates liquids. They neither have flowers nor produce
seeds, reproducing via spores. The term bryophyte comes from Greek
βρύον - bryon, "tree-moss, oyster-green" + φυτόν - fyton "plant".
Bryophyte classification: Mosses are one group of bryophytes.
Traditionally, all land plants without vascular tissues were classified
together into a single taxonomic group, often a phylum. More recently,
phylogenetic research shows that the bryophytes do not form a
monophyletic group, but consist of three separate groups, the
Marchantiophyta (liverworts), Anthocerotophyta (hornworts), and
The term "bryophyte" then refers to a shared structure and way of life
rather than a group with a single evolutionary origin.
There is still some uncertainty over the exact evolutionary
relationships among the liverworts, mosses, hornworts and vascular
plants, in particular over the placement of the hornworts.
suggests that the hornworts are sister to the vascular plants.