Actiniopteris Link

Photo: P. Ballings


Description of the genus

Plants small, terrestrial or lithophytic. Rhizome creeping, rhizome scales linear, attenuate concolorous or variegated. Fronds tufted, flabellate, dichotomously divided into linear segments, sometimes dimorphic with fertile and sterile fronds, these strongly or weakly differentiated; fertile fronds usually larger than the sterile. Sori in a submarginal line, covered by a modified marginal indusium. Indusium continuous, entire.


Derivation of name:  aktinos: ray, pteris: fern; referring to the radial or fan-shaped lamina.

Comment: Sometimes placed in the family of the Actiniopteridaceae.

Worldwide: 5 species, predominantly African, but 2 extended to India and Sri Lanka


Key to the species of Actiniopteris: PDF


We have 5 taxa in the database for Actiniopteris.

  • Actiniopteris dimorpha Pic.Serm. ssp. dimorpha
  • Actiniopteris dimorpha Pic. Serm. ssp. diversiformis Kornas
  • Actiniopteris pauciloba Pic.Serm.
  • Actiniopteris radiata (J. Konig ex Sw.) Link
  • Actiniopteris semiflabellata Pic.Serm.


  • Crouch, N.R., Klopper, R.R., Burrows, J.E. & Burrows, S.M. (2011) Ferns of Southern Africa, A comprehensive guide. Struik Nature.
  • Jacobsen, W.B.G. (1983) The Ferns and Fern Allies of Southern Africa. Butterworths, Durban and Pretoria.
  • Kornas, J. (1979) Distribution and ecology of the Pteridophytes in Zambia. Polska Akademia Nauk Wydzial II Nauk Biologicznych.
  • Roux, J.P. (2001) Conspectus of Southern African Pteridophyta.Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report, 13: 1-222.
  • Schelpe, E.A.C.L.E. (1970) Pteridophyta.Flora Zambesiaca, 0: 1-254.