Syst. Nat., edn 10, 2: 1329 (1759) APNI
Establishment means:Native (naturalised in part(s) of state)
Rhizome above or below ground, slender, creeping and branched, covered with scales with long-tapering tips. Fronds tufted, often at intervals along rhizome, erect to spreading, lacy, 9–50 cm long. Stipe long, slender, brittle, reddish-brown to almost black, smooth and shining; scales few near base, pale, papery. Lamina triangular to ovate, 2–3-pinnate, yellow-green to mid-green, delicate, glabrous; rachises very slender, dark. Pinnae with slender stalks, distant; pinnules with fine, centrally attached stalks, fan-to wedge-shaped, 3–12 mm long, 3–13 mm wide, outer edges rounded, often with shallow lobes, finely toothed or scalloped. Sori 1–4, relatively large, each deeply sunk into pinnule lobe, covered by kidney-shaped to half-moon shaped reflexed leaf flap.
CVU, DunT, EGL, EGU, GipP, Glep, Gold, GGr, HFE, HNF, HSF, NIS, OtP, OtR, SnM, Strz, VAlp, VRiv, VVP, WaP, WPro. All States. New Zealand, south and tropical Africa. Common in exposed or protected habitats on edge of forest or in scrubland, particularly near creeks and on moderately shaded hillsides.
Although there are some significant morphological variants of this species Australia-wide (some of which probably warrant formal recognition), most Victorian populations are closely allied with typical A. aethiopicum. However, a distinctive entity with deeply lobed pinnules grows in the old gold mining area between Beechworth and Stanley, in north-east Victoria. These plants differ from A. aethiopicum in having deeply divided pinnules with 3–7 sori, and from A. capillus-veneris in having small, kidney-shaped sori with a deep notch. They grow intermingled with A. aethiopicum and presumably represent a local sport. This fern has been introduced into cultivation under the name of A. aethiopicum 'Mrs Frost'. Also sparingly established (e.g. Beaumaris, South Yarra), where growing inside a street drain and on a street wall.
|Bioregion||Occurrence status||Establishment means|
|Victorian Volcanic Plain||present||native|
|Central Victorian Uplands||present||native|
|Northern Inland Slopes||present||native|
|East Gippsland Lowlands||present||native|
|East Gippsland Uplands||present||native|
|New South Wales|
|Australian Capital Territory|