Old man's beard is often confused with native clematis.Native clematis has three leaves per stalk while the old man's beard has five. Hanging moss (U. longissima) looks like gray threads about 1.5 m (5 feet) long hanging from tree branches in humid, mountainous regions. Here in New Zealand, it has no natural enemies and grows quickly, forming a dense, heavy mass that dominates lowland forests as well as shrublands, riverbeds, cliffs, bush tracks, fernlands, and tussocklands. Usnea is a genus of mostly pale grayish-green fruticose lichens that grow like leafless mini-shrubs or tassels anchored on bark or twigs. These fluffy seed heads are persistent and quite conspicuous in the winter. It is an offence under the Biosecurity Act to propagate, sell, distribute, release or spread old man’s beard in the Bay of Plenty. : 203 It resembles Evernia, which is also called tree moss. Old Man’s Beard is a wild clematis from Europe & South West Asia. Creamy white flowers in summer are followed by feathery seed heads in late summer and early fall, giving this vine its common name "old man's beard. Old man’s beard is a Containment Pest Plant in the Bay of Plenty Regional Pest Management Plan. Clematis aristata R.Br. Old man's beard vines can grow up to 100 feet long and can completely blanket trees and other plants. Members of the genus are commonly called old man's beard, or beard lichen. The first man to cycle, swim, and run the entire length of Great Britain, Sean Conway, kept a beard to stop jellyfish from stinging his face while he was in the water. ex Ker Gawl.. Clematis, a member of the Ranunculaceae (or buttercup) family , is a large genus of over 200 species, chiefly native to the temperate zones of the northern hemisphere.Six species are endemic to Australia. It… Traveller's Joy, Goatsbeard, Old Man's Beard . If you ever find yourself preparing for a long-distance competitive swim, consider growing a beard for maximum protection. Other articles where Old-man’s-beard is discussed: beard lichen: Old-man’s-beard (U. barbata) was first described in 300 bc as a hair-growth stimulant. Some species of Usnea also produce an orange dye. Legal status in King County, Washington. Usnea, also known as Beard lichen, tree’s dandruff, woman’s long hair, or tree moss, old man’s beard, Beard Moss, Mousse D Arbre, oak moss, Sodium Usniate, Usnea Barbata, Usnea Florida, Usnea Hirta, Usnea Lichen is a lichen, a symbiotic relationship between an algae and fungus.The fungus belongs to the division Ascomycota, while the alga is a member of the division Chlorophyta. : 203 The genus is in the family Parmeliaceae.It grows all over the world. Rules require land occupiers to destroy any old man’s beard on their properties.