West Highland Flora

Brittle Bladder-fern


Cystopteris fragilis

 

Cystopteris fragilis

Photo Carl Farmer
29 Jun 2003 Suardal, Skye

Quite frequent in limestone areas, in shady rock crevices and woods, occasionally on walls.

Fronds c 5-35 cm, longest pinnae c 1-4 cm

ID: General appearance is like a smallish Lady Fern.  Stalks have very few scales, apart from at the base, those higher up on the rachis being hair-like.  Rachis is black in lower part, then green.  The longest pinnae are at or a little below the middle, but they hardly diminish in size from there to the lowest, so the general appearance of the frond is parallel-sided in the lower half and then tapering evenly in the upper half. (Lady Fern tapers to both ends)  The pinnules nearest the rachis are well separated.

Other features: Forms small tufts of typically 6-8 fronds as in picture below.  Sori round, partly covered with a white oval undivided indusium.

 

Cystopteris fragilis

Photo Carl Farmer
29 Jun 2003 Suardal, Skye
Rear frond 10.5 cm from first pinnae to tip, max width 4 cm

 

Cystopteris fragilis

Photo Carl Farmer
23 May 2004 Suardal, Skye
Central downward-pointing frond c 4.8 cm from 1st pinna to tip

Young fronds


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