Ophioglossum latifolium (Prantl) J.E. Burrows

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Ophioglossum latifolium

Picture: Petra Ballings

Ophioglossum latifolium

Picture: Petra Ballings

Ophioglossum latifolium

Picture: Petra Ballings

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Species details: Click on each item to see an explanation of that item (Note: opens a new window)

Common names:
Status: Native
Rhizome spindle-shaped to linear, up to 16 mm long, 1–3 mm wide; roots fleshy, horizontal, sometimes also descending, proliferous;persistent leaf bases not present. Leaves 1 to 3. Petiole up to 28 mm long, 80–90% of its length subterranean. Sterile lamina 9-24 × 6-18 mm, bright green, appressed to, or held slightly off, the ground, broadly ovate, usually flat, sometimes slightly folded along the median line, length:width ratio 1.2–1.6:1, apex variable from rounded to pointed, base broadly wedge-shaped to truncate, margins flat and even; fertile spike (33–)50–82(–103) mm long, with (8–)11–14(–19) pairs of sporangia.
Type location:
Notes: Could be confused with O. rubellum that has a carrot-shaped rhizome and dark green leaves with an orange to reddish tinge.
Derivation of specific name: latifolium: broad-leaved
Habitat: Terrestrial, in shallow seasonally moist soils overlaying sheetrock, and in deciduous woodland.
Altitude range: 800 - 1300 m
Worldwide distribution: Angola, DRC, Kenya, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe
Zambian distribution (Flora Zambesiaca):
Zambian distribution (Provinces):
Growth form(s): Terrestrial.
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species

Burrows, J.E. & Johns, R.J. (2001). Ophioglossaceae Flora of Tropical East Africa Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew Pages 11 - 12. (Includes a picture).

Burrows, J.E. & Edwards, T.J. (1993). Nomenclatural changes and additions to the genus Ophioglossum in Africa (Ophioglossaceae: Pteridophyta) Bothalia 23(2) Pages 188 - 189.

Mapaura, A. & Timberlake, J. (eds) (2004). A checklist of Zimbabwean vascular plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 33 Sabonet, Pretoria and Harare Page 8.

Roux, J.P. (2001). Conspectus of Southern African Pteridophyta. Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report 13 Page 33.

Roux, J.P. (2009). Synopsis of the Lycopodiophyta and Pteridophyta of Africa, Madagascar and neighbouring islands Pages 34 - 35.

Other sources of information about Ophioglossum latifolium:

Our websites:

Flora of Zimbabwe: Ophioglossum latifolium

External websites:

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

Copyright: Mike Bingham, Annette Willemen, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Mark Hyde, 2011-23

Bingham, M.G., Willemen, A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. and Hyde, M.A. (2023). Flora of Zambia: Species information: Ophioglossum latifolium.
https://www.zambiaflora.com/speciesdata/species.php?species_id=100290, retrieved 3 December 2023

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