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NZ Plants

Asplenium gracillimum

Spleenwort family: Aspleniaceae

Asplenium gracillimum is a terrestrial fern with a short erect stem bearing dark green fronds that rarely bear plantlets. Similar to A. bulbiferum except that A. gracillimum fronds are a darker green and rarely form plantlets. Formerly Asplenium bulbiferum subsp. gracillimum.

Found throughout New Zealand tolerating drier conditions than A. bulbiferum.


Vegetative characteristics

Fertile frond and sporangia

Plant form: short, erect rhizome with fronds up to 1 m in length

Frond appearance: Similar to sterile frond

Frond stalk, midrib: oval scales with  an elongated filamentous tip

Sporangium location: on lower frond surface

Frond shape: lanceolate to elliptic

Sporangium position: close to leaflet margin

Frond blade: 2-3-pinnate (divided up to 3x into leaflets or pinnae)

Sporangia distribution: in groups (sori)

Frond surface: leathery

Sorus shape: linear

Leaflets: oblong

Sorus covering: linear covering (indusium)  opening toward midrib