Asplenium trichomanes, Maidenhair Spleenwort

Asplenium trichomanes quadrivalens
photos by Dennis Kalma

Scientific Name:
Common Name:
ITIS Number:
NRCS Symbol:
  Asplenium trichomanes L. ssp. quadrivalesns D.E. Meyer
Maidenhair Spleenwort
Aspleniaceae (spleenworts)

For the identification of ferns a somewhat specialized terminology is used. Some useful terms are explained at this link.

Plant: sterile leaves spreading and recumbent, forming rosette; fertile leaves form late, more erect and bright green, wither in fall

Stipe and Rachis: dark purplish brown; stipe very short, wiry

Sterile Leaves: to ~ 17 cm long; narrow, elongate, tapering slightly from midpoint toward base and tip; dark green; 1-x cut into about 20 opposite leaflets

Leaflets: ~ 1 cm long, rounded or somewhat oblong, slightly toothed; little to no stem; distal leaves may be more crowded than basal leaves

Fertile Leaves: shorter than sterile leaves, upright, bright green

Sporangia: a few compact sori on the undersides of leaflets of fertile fronds; often covered by fragile indusia

Habitat: on limestone/dolostone rocks in shaded moist areas

Similar Species: the very similar subspecies Asplenium trichomanes trichomanes grows on granitic rocks

    Asplenium trichomanes quadrivalens
Asplenium trichomanes quadrivalens
range map