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Pteris microptera Mett. ex Kuhn
Family Pteridaceae
Pteris microptera Mett. ex Kuhn APNI*

Description: Rhizome stout, erect; apex covered with short triangular brown scales.

Fronds tufted, erect, 50–200 cm tall, shining; stipe base with no scales or a few short dark brown scales; lamina outline broadly deltoid, 30–150 cm long, slightly coriaceous, bipinnate at base for 1 or 2 divisions, pinnate for 3 or 4 divisions, then apical portion deeply pinnatifid with a continuous portion of lamina along midrib of pinnules between segments 0.5–1.5 mm broad; midrib of pinnae above slightly flanged, with a blunt tooth 0.5–1 mm long at the junction of each pinnule midrib; pinnules narrow (those of median pinnae (2-) 3–4 (-6) cm long, 4–6 mm broad); veins netted.

Sori submarginal, continuous; pinnule apex sterile, 2–7 mm long, dentate, long-acute.


Distribution and occurrence: Lord Howe Is. Endemic, widespread and common throughout the Island at lower altitudes.
NSW subdivisions: LHI
AVH map***

This species is part of the widespread and complex Pteris comans group. A rare form with forked proliferation of the pinna apices was described from Lord Howe Is. material as Pteris comans var. furcata Bonap., Notes Ptéridologiques 5: 128 (1917). The differences between P. microptera and P. comans have not yet been fully circumscribed; the differences presented in the key to species on PlantNet should be taken as a guide only, until a revision of the P. comans complex is published.

Text by E.A. Brown
Taxon concept: Flora of Australia 49

APNI* Provides a link to the Australian Plant Name Index (hosted by the Australian National Botanic Gardens) for comprehensive bibliographic data
***The AVH map option provides a detailed interactive Australia wide distribution map drawn from collections held by all major Australian herbaria participating in the Australian Virtual Herbarium project.
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