Pteridophyta: Schizaeales

Lygodiaceae - Climbing ferns

Crouch, N.R., Klopper, R.R., Burrows, J.E. & Burrows, S.M. (2011) Ferns of Southern Africa, A comprehensive guide Struik Nature

Jacobsen, W.B.G. (1983) The Ferns and Fern Allies of Southern Africa. Butterworths, Durban and Pretoria.

Roux, J.P. (2001) Conspectus of Southern African Pteridophyta. Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report 13

Schelpe, E.A.C.L.E. (1970) Pteridophyta Flora Zambesiaca

Description of the family

Plants terrestrial, climber. Rhizome horizontal creeping, slender, dichotomously branched. Fronds climbing, numerous, dimorphic, specialised fertile pinnae with strongly reduced lamina parts bearing aggregated sporangia in marginal spike-like masses; with a slender twisting indeterminate rhachis, stipe cylindric, rhachis cylindrical to slightly flattened adaxially. Indumentum composed of single uniseriate hairs confined to the frond axes and veins, veins free.
The climbing stem is in fact the stipe and the rhachis of an elongated frond. Secondary rhachis branches absent or present, alternate, dichotomously branched, with an arrested apical bud in each bifurcation. Pinnae borne in pairs along the secondary rhachis. Pinnae pinnate to 3-pinnatifid. Sporangia borne along the margins of pinnule lobes, borne seperately in 2 rows at the veins endings, each sporangium subtended by an indusia-like flange covering it abaxially, homosporous.

Worldwide: 1 genus, c. 40 species worldwide

Zambia: 1 genus and 2 taxa.

Lygodium kerstenii

Links to genera:     View: living plant images - herbarium specimen images - all images for this family

Lygodium Sw.Description, Image

Other sources of information about Lygodiaceae:

Our websites:

Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Lygodiaceae
Flora of Malawi: Lygodiaceae
Flora of Mozambique: Lygodiaceae
Flora of Zimbabwe: Lygodiaceae

External websites:

African Plants: A Photo Guide (Senckenberg): Lygodiaceae
BHL (Biodiversity Heritage Library): Lygodiaceae
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Lygodiaceae
GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): Lygodiaceae
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
iNaturalist: Lygodiaceae
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Lygodiaceae
JSTOR Plant Science: Lygodiaceae
Mansfeld World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops: Lygodiaceae
Wikipedia: Lygodiaceae
Plants of the World Online: Lygodiaceae
Tropicos: Lygodiaceae

Copyright: Mike Bingham, Annette Willemen, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Mark Hyde, 2011-24

Bingham, M.G., Willemen, A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. and Hyde, M.A. (2024). Flora of Zambia: Family page: Lygodiaceae., retrieved 13 April 2024

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