There are 76 species of Lycopodium worldwide. Only two of them occur in Minnesota. Running clubmoss (Lycopodium clavatum) is very widespread and common. It has a worldwide distribution, occurring on every continent except Australia and Antarctica. It is common in Minnesota in the Arrowhead region, infrequent in the north-central and central regions as far south as the northern metro, infrequent in the driftless area in the southeast, and absent from the remainder of the state.
Running clubmoss is an evergreen, perennial club moss. It produces a very long, creeping, horizontal stem and clusters of upright, branched stems. The stems are densely covered with narrow leaves that are arranged spirally and have a long hair at the tip.
Running clubmoss looks similar to its close relative, one-cone clubmoss. It can be distinguished by the cones that occur in groups of usually 2 to 5 and are arranged as a straight central axis with spreading to ascending side branches.