Hart’s-tongue Fern

Asplenium scolopendrium This evergreen fern is a fresh green with undivided fronds which form clumps. Dark brown spore cases are borne in rows on the underside of the fronds. Frond length 60cm. They inhabit damp and shady habitats, like woodland and river banks, also rocks and walls. Common and widespread. Photographs of Hart’s-tongue Fern (Asplenium... Continue Reading →


Wall-rue Spleenwort

Asplenium ruta-muraria A delicate little evergreen fern with blueish-green or olive-green, club-shaped leaflets with toothed margins. Brown spores can be seen beneath the bipinnate (twice divided) fronds. Frond length up to 12cm. Found growing in the crevices of old walls or rocks, mainly where there is limestone. Widespread but commonest in W Britain and Ireland.... Continue Reading →

Maidenhair Spleenwort

Asplenium trichomanes This little fern grows in tufts and has dark brownish to blackish-stemmed, pinnate fronds with pairs of small, oval leaflets. Frond length up to 15cm. Found growing in the crevices of old walls or rocks. A native species which is widespread but commonest in the west of Britain. Photographs of Maidenhair Spleenwort (Asplenium... Continue Reading →


Asplenium ceterach The thick, leathery fronds are pinnately divided into rounded lobes and form clumps. The back of the frond is covered in rusty-coloured scales. Frond length up to 20cm. Found growing in the crevices of lime-rich stone walls or rocks, especially in the mortar of old walls. It can withstand drought and will curl... Continue Reading →

Common Polypody

Polypodium vulgare The fronds are flat and oblong, with lobes fairly equal in size. They are dark green and are 1-pinnate. The sori are circular. Frond length 10 to 40cm. Found on walls, rocks and trees. Also found in damp, shady places like woodland banks and gorges. Common and widespread throughout, although mostly found in... Continue Reading →

Great Horsetail

Equisetum telmateia This is Britain’s largest horsetail, with pinkish-brown fertile stems, and the sterile stems are whitish with 20 to 40 fine grooves. The sterile stems are heavily branched with between 20 to 40 emerging from each node. It can grow up to 2m tall. Fertile stems ripen in April, and sterile stems appear soon... Continue Reading →

Wood Horsetail

Equisetum sylvaticum The stem branches of this horsetail are branched themselves giving it a distinctive, elegant droop. It can grow up to 8cm tall. Fertile stems ripen April to May, and it is found in damp woods and moors. Widespread but more common in northern Britain. Photographs of Wood Horsetail (Equisetum sylvaticum), taken June 2013,... Continue Reading →

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