Asplenium septentrionale (L.) Hoffmann
Family: Aspleniaceae
forked spleenwort,  more...
Asplenium septentrionale image
Max Licher  
Roots not proliferous. Stems erect, much branched to produce dense many-stemmed tufts or mats bearing numerous crowded leaves; scales dark reddish brown to black throughout, narrowly deltate, 2--4 × 0.3--0.6 mm, margins entire. Leaves monomorphic. Petiole dark reddish brown proximally, fading to green distally, 2--13 cm, 2--5 times length of blade; indument absent. Blade linear, simple or more often 1-pinnate, 0.5--4 × 0.1--0.4 cm, occasionally wider when pinnae strongly diverge, leathery, glabrous; base acute; apex acute, not rooting at tip. Rachis green, lustrous, glabrous. Pinnae of pinnate leaves 2(--4), strongly ascending to give forked appearance, linear, (5--)10--30 × 0.75--3 mm; base acute; margins remotely lacerate; apex acute. Veins free, obscure. Sori usually 2+ per pinna, parallel to margins. Spores 64 per sporangium. 2 n = 144. Cliffs of various substrates; 700--2900 m; Ariz., Calif., Colo., D.C., N.Mex., Okla., Oreg., S.Dak., Tex., Utah, W.Va., Wyo.; Mexico in Baja California; Europe; Asia. In North America Asplenium septentrionale is principally a western species with isolated disjunct populations in Monroe and Hardy counties, West Virginia. Because of its close resemblance to a tuft of grass, it is easily overlooked, and discoveries of additional localities are to be expected. In Europe A . septentrionale is known to hybridize with several species, but in North America only the hybrid with A . trichomanes ( A . × alternifolium Wulfen) is known.

Plants forming large, very dense tufts, with numerous, crowded, slender lvs 5-15 cm, grass-like in aspect; petiole greenish, very slender, ca 0.5 mm thick, ±erect, generally longer than the blade; blades irregularly forked, with a few narrow segments (or some unforked), each segment 1-2 cm נ1-2 mm, entire or with a few long, slender teeth (reduced pinnules), and with a single compound sorus (subtended by a ±continuous indusium just within the margin on each side) running its whole length; 2n=144. Interruptedly circumboreal, in Amer. mostly cordilleran, but disjunct on shale in Monroe and Hardy cos., W.Va.

Gleason, Henry A. & Cronquist, Arthur J. 1991. Manual of vascular plants of northeastern United States and adjacent Canada. lxxv + 910 pp.

©The New York Botanical Garden. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
Common Name: forked spleenwort Rarity: G4 Etymology: Asplenium is from Greek a, without and spleen, Synonyms: None
Asplenium septentrionale image
Max Licher  
Asplenium septentrionale image
Patrick Alexander  
Asplenium septentrionale image
Patrick Alexander  
Asplenium septentrionale image
Patrick Alexander  
Asplenium septentrionale image
Patrick Alexander  
Asplenium septentrionale image
Patrick Alexander  
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Mona Terwedow  
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Dale Self  
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Asplenium septentrionale image
Mona Terwedow  
Asplenium septentrionale image
Asplenium septentrionale image