Blechnum - Blechnaceae

Blechnum punctulatum Sw. var. punctulatum

Photo: JE. Burrows

Photo: JE. Burrows

Photo: JE. Burrows

Photo: P. Ballings

Photo: P. Ballings






Lomaria punctulata (Sw.) Kunze
Blechnum rigidum Sw.
Lomaria auriculata Desv.
Lomaria densa Kaulf.
Lomaria dregeana Fée

Common name


Rhizome creeping to suberect, up to 4 cm in diameter; rhizome scales dark brown, linear, up to 2 cm long, margins pale, entire. Fronds dimorphic, tufted. Stipe up to 10 cm long, glabrous but with scales towards the base. Sterile lamina up to 110 cm × 15 cm, linear-elliptic in outline, pinnate with basal pinnae gradually decrescent; pinnae narrowly oblong, glabrous, margins entire, base with truncate lobes overlapping the rhachis. Fertile lamina reduced; pinnae 1-4 mm wide, linear. Sori linear, set parallel to the costa, continuous throughout, covering most of the undersurface of the fertile pinnae; indusium linear, (sub)entire, 0.4-0.7 mm wide.



punctulatum: finely dotted, referring to the submarginal hydathodes on the sterile lamina.


Shaded forest floor, boulders along mountain streams in scrub or along moist forest margins.

Distribution worldwide

Africa, Madagascan region.

Distribution in Africa

Lesotho, Malawi, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania , Zimbabwe.

Growth form

Lithophytic, terrestrial.


  • Burrows, J.E. (1990) Southern African Ferns and Fern Allies. Frandsen, Sandton. Pages 332 - 335. (Includes a picture).
  • Crouch, N.R., Klopper, R.R., Burrows, J.E. & Burrows, S.M. (2011) Ferns of Southern Africa, A comprehensive guide. Struik Nature. Pages 736 - 738. (Includes a picture).
  • Jacobsen, W.B.G. (1983) The Ferns and Fern Allies of Southern Africa. Butterworths, Durban and Pretoria. Pages 466 - 467. (Includes a picture).
  • Parris, B.S. (2006) Blechnaceae.Flora of Tropical East Africa, Page 6. As Blechnum punctulatum Sw. (Includes a picture).
  • Roux, J.P. (2001) Conspectus of Southern African Pteridophyta.Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report, 13 Page 155.
  • 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 104.
  • Schelpe, E.A.C.L.E. (1970) Pteridophyta.Flora Zambesiaca, 0 Page 239.