Dryopteris - Dryopteridaceae

Dryopteris athamantica (Kunze) Kuntze

Photo: P. Ballings
Zimbabwe

Photo: P. Ballings
Zimbabwe

Photo: P. Ballings
Zimbabwe

Photo: P. Ballings
Zimbabwe

 

 

 

 

Synonyms

Nephrodium athamanticum (Kunze) Hook.
Aspidium athamanticum Kunze
Lastrea athamantica (Kunze) T.Moore
Lastrea plantii T.Moore
Nephrodium eurylepium Peter

Common name

Description

Rhizome creeping to suberect, up to 25 mm in diameter; rhizome scales reddish-brown, narrowly lanceolate to linear in outline, up to 22 x 2 mm, margins with or without filamentous outgrows. Fronds tufted, erect, rigid, subcoriaceous. Stipe stout, up to 54 x 1.4 cm, straw-coloured, darker towards the base, grooved, with scales similar to the rhizome towards the base. Lamina up to 78 × 27 cm, narrowly ovate-oblong to lanceolate in outline, 2-pinnate-pinnatifid to 3-pinnate-pinnatifid, basal pinnae hardly reduced. Pinnae up to 25 × 12 cm, up to 23 stalked pairs, usually forming an angle of less than 50° from the rhachis, narrowly triangular-oblong in outline, subglabrous on both surfaces. Pinnules narrowly oblong-lanceolate, deeply pinnatifid into oblong, obtuse ultimate lobes with shallowly crenate to subentire margins, up to 20 x 7 mm. Rhachis straw-coloured to greenish, narrowly winged towards the apex, with a few hair-like, reddish-brown scales. Sori round, discrete or touching, up to 1.6 mm in diameter at maturity, 1-3 per ultimate segment; indusia round to kidney-shaped, membranous, entire or slightly dentate, up to 1.7 mm in diameter.

Notes

Could be confused with the sun form of D. pentheri which has an ovate-triangular lamina, pinnae angled at 70-80° from the rhachis and pinnules that are ovate to round-oblong in outline.

Derivation

athamantis: brightness; this may refer to the preference of this species for sunny open habitats.

Habitat

Around boulder bases or at scrub margins in montane grassland, miombo woodland, in ditches, along roads, exposed areas in full sun.

Distribution worldwide

Tropical to subtropical Africa.

Distribution in Africa

Angola, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Mozambique, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Sudan and South Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania , Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Growth form

Lithophytic, terrestrial.

Literature

  • Burrows, J.E. (1990) Southern African Ferns and Fern Allies. Frandsen, Sandton. Pages 300 - 302. (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 472 - 473. (Includes a picture).
  • Jacobsen, W.B.G. (1983) The Ferns and Fern Allies of Southern Africa. Butterworths, Durban and Pretoria. Pages 433 - 435. (Includes a picture).
  • Kornas, J. (1979) Distribution and ecology of the Pteridophytes in Zambia. Polska Akademia Nauk Wydzial II Nauk Biologicznych. Page 107.
  • 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 120.
  • Roux, J.P. (2001) Conspectus of Southern African Pteridophyta. Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report, 13 Page 127. (Includes a picture).
  • Roux, J.P.; Shaffer-Fehre, M. & Verdcourt, B. (2007) Dryopteridaceae. Flora of Tropical East Africa, Page 38.
  • Schelpe, E.A.C.L.E. (1970) Pteridophyta. Flora Zambesiaca, 0 Page 221.
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