Polystichum whiteleggei Watts APNI*
Description: Terrestrial or lithophytic ferns, ±tufted. Rhizome shortly creeping; scales on apex dense, lanceolate, to 2 cm long, 3–4 mm broad, long-acute, dark brown.
Fronds 3-pinnate; stipe (5-) 10–50 cm long; scales on stipe similar to those on rhizome, to 1.5 cm long, especially towards base; lamina deltoid in outline, (10-) 15–50 cm long, (7-) 12–40 cm broad, somewhat coriaceous; rachis and costae with usually dense, lanceolate scales to 7 mm long, with non-glandular arachnoid hairs between which are easily rubbed off; pinnules lanceolate, 1–2 cm long, irregularly bluntly serrate with apex bluntly acute and veins just visible above.
Sori often almost covering lower surface; indusia ±funnel-shaped, 1–2 mm diam., without glands, caducous.
Distribution and occurrence: Lord Howe Is. Endemic. Locally common to rare on the flanks and edges of the summits of Mts Gower and Lidgbird.
Moist soaks at base of cliffs and margins of streams; exposed to heavily shaded; occasionally in somewhat drier habitats but usually smaller and less luxuriant than plants in moist niches.
NSW subdivisions: LHI
Text by E.A. Brown
Taxon concept: Flora of Australia 49
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