Rhytidiadelphus squarrosus is commonly found in open and shady areas. Rhytidiadelphus squarrosus often grows in areas where moisture persists such as a lawns, disturbed habitats among grasses, and along streams.
The leaves taper from a broadly-ovate, sheathing base to a long attenutate and recurved apex.
Sporophytes are red-brown when mature.
The seta is red.
This moss is perhaps the most common and easily recognized pleurocarpous moss found in lawns in Southwestern British Columbia. The combination of erect shoots with reddish stems, strongly squarrose leaves and weedy habitat is diagnostic.