Ferns and Fern Allies in the Canberra Region

Adiantum hispidulum - Rough Maidenhair fern

Adiantum hispidulum While Adiantum hispidulum has been reported in the Canberra region, it is not common, as it appears to be frost tender. Elsewhere in south-eastern Australia, it is very hardy, including in quite dry areas. It resembles several other ferns of the Adiantum family that grow in Australia. Its pinnules are more angular than Common Maidenhair, and the fronds are more obviously palmate. A key distinguishing characteristic is the rough stipe. The specimen shown here was one I photographed in Queensland. Some young fronds show a pinkish colouration, which I understand is a chemical that protects the growing tips from damage by solar ultraviolet.

A hispidulum sporesTypical of all Adiantum species, the sporangia are borne under the recurved edge of the pinnae, as shown here. The photograph is of the underside of the frond. The dark glossy stems are also evident. An image of the spores of a closely related fern, Adiantum formosum, is on the "About Ferns" page.

Rough Maidenhair is a very attractive fern to grow in the greenhouse or in benign climates.


back site mapDavid Nicholls
May 1999