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Asplenium trichomanes

Asplenium trichomanes

Asplenium trichomanes

Asplenium trichomanes (Maidenhair Spleenwort)
Aspleniaceae.  (Spleenwort Family)
. Synonym: Polypodiaceae.

Montane. Rocks. Summer.
Vallecito Creek Trail, September 13, 2010.

Asplenium trichomanes is found in most states and provinces and it is circumboreal, but it is a rare find in the Four Corners area.  Its habitat is cliff crevices and talus slopes in the montane zone. 

Very attractive fronds arch and curve with light green leaflets attached to red-brown rachises (the central frond vein). As shown in the center of the photograph at left, these rachises persist after the leaflets have dropped.  Leaflets can range from half to twice the size of those shown; they have small teeth; and they are reduced in size toward the end of the frond. 

The genus was named by Linnaeus in 1753 and Asplenium trichomanes was also named by Linnaeus in 1753 from collections made in Europe. 

"Asplenon", from the Greek "a" ("without") and "splen" ("spleen") was the name given by Dioscorides to a Fern which he believed had the power to cure spleen diseases

"Trichomanes", the name given to some Fern by Theophrastus and Dioscorides, is Greek for "soft hair". 

Range map © John Kartesz,
Floristic Synthesis of North America

State Color Key

Species present in state and native
Species present in state and exotic
Species not present in state

County Color Key

Species present and not rare
Species present and rare
Species extirpated (historic)
Species extinct
Species noxious
Species exotic and present
Native species, but adventive in state
Eradicated
Questionable presence

Asplenium trichomanes

Range map for Asplenium trichomanes