Pteridium - Dennstaedtiaceae

Pteridium aquilinum (L.) Kuhn ssp. centrali-africanum Hieron. ex R.E.Fr.

Photo: BT. Wursten
Zimbabwe

Photo: BT. Wursten
Zimbabwe

 

 

 

 

Synonyms

Pteridium centrali-africanum (Hieron.) Alston
Pteridium aquilinum (L.) Kuhn subsp. caudatum (L.) Bonap. var. africanum Bonap.
Pteridium aquilinum (L.) Kuhn var. africanum (Bonap.) R.M.Tryon

Common name

Description

Rhizome widely creeping, subterranean, 5-10 mm in diameter (up to 2.5 cm when fresh); rhizome scales brown, very fine, up to 1 mm long. Fronds widely spaced, stiff, hard, erect, pubescent fronds, 0.3-1.8(-3) m tall. Stipe up to 0.5 m long, underground portion swollen and covered with fine, brown hairs, above-ground portion pale-green, glabrous. Lamina 3-pinnate to 4-pinnatifid, triangular to oblong-ovate in outline. Pinnae ovate-triangular in outline, up to 40 x 15 cm, standing out from the rhachis horizontally at nearly right angles; basal pinnae as long as the lamina; pinnae in the upper half 2-pinnate. Pinnules deeply incised, joined to the costules, long caudate, lobes long caudate or linear, entire, lower surface with short hairs or subglabrous. Rhachis and secondary rhachises pale brown, eventually hairless. Sori linear, continuous, situated just inside the inrolled margins; pseudo-indusium continuous, membranous, c. 0.5 mm wide, ciliate.

Notes

Derivation

aquilinum: of an eagle; either because the spreading pinnae resemble the wings of an aegle or a reference to the shape of the vascular bundle in the stipe.

Habitat

Open Brachystegia woodland, along fringes of riverine vegetation, grassland, disturbed areas, weed in cultivation.

Distribution worldwide

See African distribution.

Distribution in Africa

Angola, Burundi, Congo, Dem. Republic of Congo, Gabon, Malawi, Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania , Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Growth form

Terrestrial.

Literature

  • Burrows, J.E. (1990) Southern African Ferns and Fern Allies. Frandsen, Sandton. Pages 103 - 104. (Includes a picture).
  • Jacobsen, W.B.G. (1983) The Ferns and Fern Allies of Southern Africa. Butterworths, Durban and Pretoria. Pages 209 - 210.
  • Kornas, J. (1979) Distribution and ecology of the Pteridophytes in Zambia. Polska Akademia Nauk Wydzial II Nauk Biologicznych. Pages 82 - 83.
  • Roux, J.P. (2001) Conspectus of Southern African Pteridophyta. Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report, 13 Pages 89 - 90. (Includes a picture).
  • Roux, J.P. (2009) Synopsis of the Lycopodiophyta and Pteridophyta of Africa, Madagascar and neighbouring islands. Strelitzia 23, South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria. Page 112.
  • Schelpe, E.A.C.L.E. (1970) Pteridophyta. Flora Zambesiaca, 0 Pages 88 - 89. (Includes a picture).
  • Verdcourt, B. (1999) Dennstaedtiaceae. Flora of Tropical East Africa, Pages 5 - 8. (Includes a picture).
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