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Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

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Aquatic and Wetland Vascular Plants of the Northern Great Plains

4. Polypodiaceae, the Polypody Family

2. Athyrium Roth

1. Athyrium filix-femina (L.) Roth -- Lady fern

Rhizome stout, short-creeping, scaly. Fronds annual, alike, clustered, 4-10 dm tall, the blades bipinnate to bipinnate-pinnatifid, with the pinnules toothed to deeply dissected, lanceolate, 2.5-6 dm long, 1-3 dm wide, glabrous, acuminate, narrowed at the base; pinnae numbering mostly 15-25(30) pairs, spreading, mostly alternate, linear-lanceolate, 1-4 cm wide; veins simple to dichotomizing a few times; petioles ca. 1/2 the length of the blade, with chaffy scales mostly near the base. Sori round to oblong, often hooked or horseshoe-shaped, in 2 regular rows on the backs of the pinnules; indusium attached along its margin to one side of the sorus. Jun--Sep. Swamp margins, wooded banks and alluvial woods; uncommon; e ND, e SD and the Black Hills, n NE; (Cosmopolitan). A. angustum (Willd.) Presl.
GIF- Distribution Map

Map key

Previous Species -- Adiantum L. -- Maidenhair fern
Return to Family -- Polypodiaceae - The Polypody Family
Next Species -- Dryopteris carthusiana (Vill.) H. P. Fuchs -- Spinulose woodfern

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