Types of Sphagnum

On the chart below you can see the countries with very big areas of peatland. These countries are also the world’s largest peat producers. In Estonia over 1 million hectares are covered with peatland. From this total peatland resource 10000 ha is used for industrial production. If weather is in our favor, Estonian peat producers harvest almost a million tons of peat per year, most of it is milled peat. The Estonian peatlands consist of various moss types, but Sphagnum mosses are prevailing.

The formation of pleatland started after the last ice age. About a third of Estonian bogs has been formed as a result of disappearance of lakes and approximately 2/3 as a result of the fact that rainfall is in our country greater than evaporation.

There are many members of Sphagnum family. Sphagnum is a genus of between 151 and 350 species of mosses commonly called peat moss, due to its prevalence in peat bogs and mires. In Europe there are 50 species, 37 of those grow in Estonia. The most common in bogs are S. fuscum, S. rubellum; S. Magellanicum, S. Balticum, S. Palustre.