Arachniodes aristata (G. Forst.) Tindale

East Indian holly fern

Etymology Aristata means bearded, or with an awn, like the oats.
Description Rhizome: long creeping, 1 cm diam., fronds distant, reddish brown scales.
Frond: evergreen, monomorphic, blade/stipe ratio: .
Stipe: straw-colored, brown below, sometimes more than 50 cm long in fertile fronds, densely scaly at base, vascular bundles: 4 or more in an arc.
Blade: 3-pinnate, actually more divided on the lowest pinna, first pinnule, first segment, and only on mature plants, deltate or pentagonal, glossy, below: hairlike scales.
Pinnae: 5 to 10 pair, lowest ones largest, gradually smaller upwards, then abruptly narrowing ; pinnules basal basiscopic of lowest pinnae far larger than second ones; costae grooved above, continuous from rachis to costae to costules; margins creanate, spiny; veins free, forked.
Sori: round, between midrib and margin, indusium: reniform, central, sporangia: black.
Culture Habitat: fairly dry floor of mountain forests, usually in zones less than 20 km from coast. Distribution: Japan, Korea, China, Taiwan, India, SE. Asia generally, through Malesia to Polynesia and New Zealand. Hardy to -20C, USDA Zone 6.
Synonyms
Polypodium aristatum G. Forst.
Rumohra aristata (G. Forst.) Ching
A. aristata: sporangia translucent
Immature pinnule of Arachniodes aristata, translucent sporangia, kidney-shaped sori.  Photo: Fagg, M. from the database of the Australian National Botanic Gardens.
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