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Common Names in English:
Common Polypody, American Wall Fern, Rock Polypody
Common Names in French:
Polypode De Virginie, Tripes-De-Roches
, on rock, or often epiphytic, erect
, or occasionally pendent. Stems long- to short-creeping, branched or not, bearing scales
and few to numerous
, usually dictyostelic. Leaves monomorphic
in bud. Petiole
, as in Loxogramme ], lacking scales or sometimes scaly
, with usually 3 vascular bundles
. Blade simple
to often pinnatifid
, or pinnate, infrequently more divided
; rachis grooved
or not adaxially. Veins free
(and simple to several times forked
) to often anastomosing in complex
, areoles with or without included
. Indument on blade
absent, or petiole, rachis, costae, and sometimes blade tissue usually bearing hairs
(these often septate
and with reddish crosswalls) and/or scales. Sori borne abaxially on veins, round
, occasionally elongate
, rarely marginal
, rarely covering surface; paraphyses present or absent; sporangia with stalk
of 2 or 3 rows
; indusia absent. Spores usually transparent or yellowish (rarely greenish), all 1 kind, bilateral
, monolete [rarely trilete, as in some Loxogramme], surface most often smooth
, or granulate
, occasionally spiny
, 64 per sporangium (spores globose
and 32 per sporangium in apogamous spp.
) . Gametophytes green, aboveground, cordate or elliptic
or sometimes glandular
; archegonia and antheridia borne on lower surface, antheridia 3-celled.
Genera ca. 40, species perhaps 500 (7 genera, 25 species in the flora ) : worldwide, especially tropics and subtropics.
Genera in this family are variously circumscribed, and the New World species historically were placed in the single genus Polypodium . Many of the segregates recognized here are still placed in Polypodium in recent floristic accounts. Limits of genera in both Old World and New World are controversial and are currently under study by several workers.
on rock, occasionally terrestrial
or epiphytic. Stems creeping
, usually branched, 3--15 mm diam., sometimes whitish pruinose
concolored to bicolored
, lanceolate to ovate-acuminate, not clathrate to strongly clathrate, glabrous
entire to denticulate
. Leaves monomorphic
, closely spaced to distant
, not conspicuously narrowed at tip
, to 90 cm. Petiole
to stem, straw-colored, somewhat flattened or grooved
to nearly terete
to deltate, pinnatifid
to 1-pinnate at base
, not pectinate
, usually with fewer than 25 pairs of pinnae, not glaucous or conspicuously scaly
; rachis sparsely scaly to glabrescent
to glabrous adaxially; scales ovate-lanceolate to linear
, not peltate or clathrate. Segments linear to oblong
; margins entire to serrate; apex rounded
to attenuate. Venation
to anastomosing, if strongly anastomosing, then never with more than 1 included
areoles. Sori often confined to distal region of leaf, discrete, circular to oval
, borne at tips of single veins, in 1--3 rows
on either side of midrib
absent or of modified sporangia (sporangiasters), often bearing glandular
on bulbous head
. Spores monolete, rugose
Species ca. 100: worldwide.
Some species traditionally included in Polypodium are treated here in other genera, for example, Pleopeltis and Pecluma.
Except for the tropical species Polypodium triseriale, North American Polypodium is a complex assemblage of interactive species. The North American species have ties to European taxa (e.g. , P . vulgare sensu stricto , which probably originated by allopolyploidy between P . glycyrrhiza and P . sibiricum ) but are quite distinct from them. Morphologic comparisons and continuing biochemical and molecular studies indicate that two groups of diploid species occur within the North American P . vulgare complex. One group includes P . glycyrrhiza and P . californicum ; the second, P . amorphum, P . appalachianum, and P . sibiricum . Allopolyploid species have originated following hybridizations within a species group (i.e. , P . calirhiza from P . glycyrrhiza × californicum, P . saximontanum from P . amorphum × sibiricum, and P . virginianum from P . appalachianum × sibiricum ) as well as between members of the two groups (i.e., P . hesperium from P . amorphum × glycyrrhiza ) . These reticulate relationships are summarized in the reticulogram. We consider P . scouleri to be peripheral to the "core" diploids even though hybrids have been reported.
Species Polypodium virginianum
Stems often whitish pruinose
, slender, to 6 mm diam., acrid-tasting;
, lanceolate, contorted distally, base
light brown, sometimes with dark central stripe, margins
. Leaves to 40 cm. Petiole
slender, to 2 mm diam. Blade
to narrowly lanceolate, pinnatifid
, usually widest near middle
occasionally at or near base, to 7 cm wide, somewhat leathery; rachis
lanceolate-ovate, usually more than 6 cells
wide. Segments oblong,
less than 8 mm wide; margins entire to crenulate
; apex rounded
broadly acute; midrib
glabrous adaxially. Venation
. Sori midway
between margin and midrib to nearly marginal
, less than 3 mm diam.,
circular when immature
. Sporangiasters present, usually less than
40 per sorus, heads
covered with glandular
. Spores more than
52 µm, tuberculate
, surface projections more than 3 µm
tall. 2 n = 148. Sporulating summer--fall. [source]
Traditionally, two cytotypes have been recognized within Polypodium virginianum (I. Manton and M. Shivas 1953). Recent research has demonstrated that the tetraploid cytotype, which properly bears the name P. virginianum (R. Cranfill and D. M. Britton 1983), is an allopolyploid produced by hybridization between the diploid cytotype (here called P. appalachianum ) and P. sibiricum (C. H. Haufler and M. D. Windham 1991; C. H. Haufler and Wang Z. R. 1991). Although sometimes similar to its diploid parents in overall leaf morphology, P. virginianum has consistently larger spores, typically more than 52 µm (see additional comments under P. appalachianum and P. sibiricum ). Frequent hybridizations between P. virginianum and P. appalachianum form morphologically intermediate, triploid individuals with misshapen spores. Sterile triploids also result from hybridization between P. virginianum and P. sibiricum. [source]
Flowers: Bloom Period: n/a • Flower Color: inconspicuous, none
Size: 6-12" tall.
Typically found at an altitude of 0 to 2,500 meters (0 to 8,202 feet).
Sunlight: Sun Exposure: Partial to Full Shade.
Temperature: Cold Hardiness: 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b. (map)
- Whittaker & Margulis,1978
- Haeckel, 1866
- Cavalier-Smith, 1981
- Sinnott, 1935 ex Cavalier-Smith, 1998
- Vascular Plants
- Kenrick & Crane, 1997, Nom. Nud.
- Cronquist et al.
- Family: Polypodiaceae () - Berchtold & J. Presl, 1820 - common ferns, licorice ferns
- Order: Polypodiales () - Link
- Class: Polypodiopsida () - Cronquist et al.
- Infraphylum: Moniliformopses () - Kenrick & Crane, 1997, Nom. Nud.
- Subphylum: Euphyllophytina ()
- Phylum: Tracheophyta () - Sinnott, 1935 ex Cavalier-Smith, 1998 - Vascular Plants
- Subkingdom: Viridaeplantae () - Cavalier-Smith, 1981
- Kingdom: Plantae () - Haeckel, 1866 - Plants
P. vulgare Linnaeus Var. americanum Hooker • P. vulgare var. virginianum (Linnaeus) D. C. Eaton • Polypodium vinlandicum A. Löve and D. Löve • Polypodium vulgare auct. p. p. non L. • Polypodium vulgare var. virginianum (L.) Eat.
Status: Accepted Name
Last scrutiny: 15-Mar-2000
Members of the genus Polypodium
ZipcodeZoo has pages for 37 species, subspecies, varieties, forms, and cultivars in this genus:
P. amorphum (Irregular Polypody) · P. appalachianum (Appalachian Polypody) · P. attenuatum (Tapered Polypody) · P. bulbiferum (Bulblet Bladderfern) · P. californicum (California Polypody) · P. calirhiza (Nested Polypody) · P. cambricum (Welsh Polypody) · P. carthusianum (Spinulose Wood Fern) · P. dissimile (Forkvein Polypody) · P. dulce (Treetrunk Polypody) · P. exaltatum (Sword Fern) · P. falax (Crested Poly) · P. formosanum (Catepillar Fern) · P. glycyrrhiza (Licorice Fern) · P. hesperium (Western Licorice Fern) · P. hexagonopterum (Broad Beech Fern) · P. ilvense (Rusty Woodsia) · P. interjectum (Polypody) · P. lanceolatum (Lanceleaf Polypody) · P. lonchitis (Northern Holly Fern) · P. loriceum (Clambering Polypody) · P. musifolium (Polypodium) · P. pellucidum (Ae) · P. pellucidum Kaulf. var. vulcanicum Skottsb. (Dotted Polypody) · P. pellucidum var. pellucidum (Dotted Polypody) · P. pellucidum var. vulcanicum (Dotted Polypody) · P. punctatum 'Grandiceps Cobra' (Climbing Bird's Nest Fern) · P. robertianum (Limestone Oak Fern) · P. saximontanum (Rocky Mountain Polypody) · P. scouleri (Coast Polypody) · P. sibiricum (Siberian Polypody) · P. subauriculatum var. knightii (Polypodium) · P. submarginale (Brownhair Lacefern) · P. triseriale (Angle-Vein Fern) · P. virginianum (Common Polypody) · P. virginianum var. peraferens (American Wall Fern) · P. 'Green Wave' (Polypodium)
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Accessed through GBIF Data Portal November 16, 2007:
- Canadian Museum of Nature, Canadian Museum of Nature Herbarium
- Missouri Botanical Garden, Missouri Botanical Garden
- USDA PLANTS, USDA PLANTS Database
- University of Alabama Biodiversity and Systematics, Herbarium
- Utah State University, USU-UTC Specimen Database
- Biodiversity Heritage Library NamebankID: 2644471
- Catalogue of Life Accepted Name Code: ITS-17242
- Global Biodiversity Information Facility Taxonkey: 13728370
- Globally Unique Identifier: urn:lsid:ipni.org:names:20009100-1
- GRIN Nomen Number: 403331
- Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS) Taxonomic Serial Number (TSN): 17242
- Natural Heritage Network Species Identifier: PPPOL02110
- U.S.D.A. Plant Symbol: POVU3
- Zipcode Zoo Species Identifier: 57620
- Alan R. Smith "Polypodiaceae". in Flora of North America Vol. 2. Oxford University Press. Online at EFloras.org. [back]
- Christopher H. Haufler, Michael D. Windham, Frank A. Lang, S. A. Whitmore "Polypodium". in Flora of North America Vol. 2. Oxford University Press. Online at EFloras.org. [back]
- Mean = 188.530 meters (618.537 feet), Standard Deviation = 239.140 based on 9,788 observations. Altitude information for each observation from British Oceanographic Data Centre. [back]