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Adiantum atroviride (ADIANTACEAE) Maidenhair Fern

Image: Fronds

Adiantum - maidenair
PHOTO: Robert Whyte

Was Adiantum aethiopicum. Rhizome creeping, much branched, covered with papery scales.

Fronds mostly 20-50 cm high, 2-4-pinnate, stalks of the ultimate segments attached at the centre of their bases so that segments +/- symmetric at base; segments 3-8 mm long, membranous, pale green, outer margin lobed or finely toothed; stipe reddish brown to dark brown to very dark red-brown.

Sterile fronds spreading. Fertile fronds erect with smaller pinnules; sori large, reniform, usually 1-5 per segment.

Image: Fronds closeup

Adiantum sp
PHOTO: Robert Whyte

Adiantum... from Greek, adiantos, unwetted, referring to the water repellent fronds. All varieties of Adiantum aethiopicum in Australia have been renamed atroviride.

Food for the caterpillars of Callopistria maillardi moths.

References and resources