Pneumatopteris Nakai


Description of the genus

Plants terrestrial. Rhizome short, erect or sometimes creeping. Fronds monomorphic, pinnate, proliferous with at most 1 bud on rachis near the apex. Lamina without scales, basal pinnae slightly reduced, no forked or branched hairs, veins of the pinnae lobes with several pairs meeting below the sinus between the lobes. Sori circular, exindusiate.


Derivation of name:  pneuma: wind, pteris: fern; some species possess aerophores (small swelling along stipe or secondary rhachis for gas exchange).

Worldwide: c. 70 species, paleotropical distribution.



We have 8 taxa in the database for Pneumatopteris.

  • Pneumatopteris afra (H.Christ) Holttum
  • Pneumatopteris blastophora (Alston) Holttum
  • Pneumatopteris oppositifolia (Hook.) Holttum
  • Pneumatopteris prismaticus (Desv.) Holttum
  • Pneumatopteris subpennigera (C.Chr.) Holttum
  • Pneumatopteris unita (Kunze) Holttum
  • Pneumatopteris usambarensis Holttum
  • Pneumatopteris venulosa (Kuntze) Holttum


  • 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.
  • Roux, J.P. (2001) Conspectus of Southern African Pteridophyta.Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report, 13: 1-222.