Blechnum - Blechnaceae

Blechnum punctulatum Sw. var. krebsii (Kunze) Sim.

Photo: JE. Burrows
South Africa






Onychium krebsii Kunze
Scolopendrium krebsii (Kunze) Kunze
Lomaria punctulatum (Sw.) Kunze var. krebsii (Kunze) Sim
Blechnum punctulatum (Sw.) var. scolopendrioides Mett. ex Kuhn

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 lanceolate, apex gradually tapering to a point, sometime falcate, glabrous, margins entire, base with truncate lobes overlapping the rhachis. Fertile lamina not obviously reduced; pinnae 5-10 mm wide, narrowly lanceolate, margins entire to crenate. Sori oval, discrete set at 45° to the costa, usually in pairs facing each other.


This variety is smaller with broader fronds and pinnae, margins are slightly wavy or crenulate.


krebsii: for J.L.E. Krebs (1792-1844), German plant collector and zoologist.


In dry situations along the margins of coastal forest, often on cliffs and in rocky situations, almost always in shade.

Distribution worldwide

Endemic to South Africa.

Distribution in Africa

South Africa.

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. Page 740. (Includes a picture).
  • Jacobsen, W.B.G. (1983) The Ferns and Fern Allies of Southern Africa. Butterworths, Durban and Pretoria. Pages 468 - 469. (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 104.