Difference between Riccia and Marchantia

The major differences between Riccia and Marchantia can be found in their features and physical appearance. Both Riccia and Marchantia belong to the same order, Marchantiales. They are both bryophytes that share some common features. Let us know a little about Riccia and Marchantia, before differentiating between them.

Genus Riccia

Kingdom: Plantae

Division: Marchantiophyta

Class: Marchantiopsida

Order: Marchantiales

Family: Ricciaceae

Genus: Riccia

The genus Riccia (liverworts) are small thalloid plants that are not differentiated into roots, stems and leaves. They are dichotomously branched and form rosettes.

They are usually monoecious and their sexual organs are antheridia and archegonia. Asexual reproduction is by the mode of spores.

Most of the species are terrestrial, growing on moist damp soil, while some are aquatic. Common species of Riccia are R.discolor, R.reticulata, R.glauca, etc.

Genus Marchantia

Kingdom: Plantae

Division: Marchantiophyta

Class: Marchantiopsida

Order: Marchantiales

Family: Marchantiaceae

Genus: Marchantia

Structure of Marchantia

The genus Marchantia (liverworts) is divided into an upper photosynthetic layer and a lower storage layer. The characteristic feature of Marchantia are gemmae cups that are useful in asexual reproduction.

The plants are dioeceous and the sexual reproductive organs are antherdia and archegonia. They grow mostly on silty and clayey soils and recently burnt lands.

Read about Marchantia in detail here.

Let us now see the differences between Riccia and Marchantia.




Riccia is a rosette-like dichotomously branched plant with a prostrate thallus.

Marchantia is dorsiventral, dichotomously branched with a prominent midrib. They have rhizoids and scales at the base to attach to the substratum.

Sexual system

They have monoicy, that is, male and female reproductive organs that grow on the same plant.

They have diocy, that is, male and female reproductive organs that grow on different plants.

Characteristic feature

The characteristic feature of the Riccia plant is a rosette-like thallus.

The characteristic feature of the Marchantia plant is the presence of gemmae cups and barrel-shaped pores.


The sporophyte consists only of the capsule, foot and seta are missing.

The sporophyte is differentiated into foot, seta and a capsule.

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Frequently Asked Questions


Is Marchantia a Pteridophyte?

No, Marchantia is not a Pteridophyte because it lacks roots and vascular systems.

Which type of plant is Riccia?

Riccia is a liverwort belonging to the order Marchantiales, which is not differentiated into a stem, root and leaves.


What is the common name for Marchantia?

Marchantia is commonly known as common liverwort or umbrella liverworts.


Is Riccia a bryophyte?

Yes, Riccia is a bryophyte. It is undifferentiated and lacks roots and a vascular system.


Is Riccia homosporous or heterosporous?

Riccia, and in fact all bryophytes are homosporous, that is, they produce the same types of spores.


What is the common name of Riccia?

The common name of Riccia is the floating liverwort.


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