West Highland Flora

Small Adderstongue


Ophioglossum azoricum

 

Ophioglossum azoricum

Photo Dr Stephen Bungard
14 July 2004 Manish Island, Raasay

Scarce.  Occurs in bare or shortly vegetated ground on exposed clifftops.

Sterile leaf-blade 1-3.5 cm long.  Beware small specimens of ordinary Adderstongue

ID: The frond consists of a spore-less pointed leaf-blade and a narrow pointed spore-bearing spike on a stalk.  Told from Adderstongue by nearly all the fronds arising 2-3 together rather than singly.  This is seen in the left-hand picture (where one of the fertile spikes has been bitten off), and also in the picture below left.  The pair of leaves are joined together just below the surface.

Other features: The spike has c 4-18 segments on each side, each of which opens up when ripe to release the spores.  The sterile blades are broadest near the middle and taper towards both ends.  Those of Adderstongue are often broadest near the base, narrowing gradually to the tip but abruptly to the base.

 

Ophioglossum azoricum

Photo Dr Stephen Bungard
14 July 2004 Manish Island, Raasay

  Ophioglossum azoricum

Photo Dr Stephen Bungard
14 July 2004 Manish Island, Raasay


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