Diplazium esculentum (Retz.) Sw.

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Synonyms: Anisogonium esculentum (Retz.) C.Presl
Callipteris esculentum (Retz.) Houlston & T.Moore
Hemionitis esculenta Retz.
Common names:
Status: Introduced
Rhizome erect, often with a slendert caudex up to 0.5 (1)m × 6 cm; rhizome scales dark brown with black margins, up to 10 mm long, margins finely toothed; vegetatively spreading and forming colonies from root buds. Fronds large, tufted, erect. Stipe up to 6 cm long, grooved, pale brown above, darker and more scaly at the base. Lamina 2- to 3-pinnate, up to 0.85 m × 0.6 m, triangular in outline. Pinnules triangular-linear, variable in size, up to 8 × 2.5 cm, dark green, subsessile, very shallowly cut into lobes with rounded apices, margins toothed, glabrous above, but costules and veins below with scattered, pale brown scales; veins free or forked, basal 3-5 pairs of adjacent veins anastomosing below the sinus. Rhachis grooved, subglabrous with small light brown scales especially along the groove. Sori linear, set along most veins; indusium dark brown, thin, margins becoming uneven with age.
Notes: Can be seperated from D. zanzibaricum and D. nemorale by having a triangular, 2- to 3-pinnate lamina with shallowly incised pinnules that have veins anastomising below the sinus of the lobes.
Derivation of specific name: esculentum: edible, some use the young fronds as a vegetable.
Habitat: exposed or in partial shade in disturbed places, in wet areas such as along streambanks.
Altitude range: (metres)
Worldwide distribution: Native to Asia, naturalised in South Africa, Zimbabwe, USA, Australia.
Zimbabwe distribution: ?
Growth form(s): Terrestrial.
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species

Crouch, N.R., Klopper, R.R., Burrows, J.E. & Burrows, S.M. (2011). Ferns of Southern Africa, A comprehensive guide Struik Nature Pages 722 - 723. (Includes a picture).

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 11.

Roux, J.P. (2001). Conspectus of Southern African Pteridophyta. Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report 13 Pages 137 - 138.

Roux, J.P. (2009). Synopsis of the Lycopodiophyta and Pteridophyta of Africa, Madagascar and neighbouring islands Page 217.

Other sources of information about Diplazium esculentum:

External websites:

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

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2002-24

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2024). Flora of Zimbabwe: Species information: Diplazium esculentum.
https://www.zimbabweflora.co.zw/speciesdata/species.php?species_id=102020, retrieved 20 April 2024

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