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FNA | Family List | FNA Vol. 2 | Parkeriaceae

1. Ceratopteris Brongniart, Bull. Sci. Soc. Philom. Paris. sér. 3, 8: 186. 1821.

Antler ferns, water ferns, floating ferns [Greek cerato, horned, and pteris, fern, referring to the antlerlike fertile leaf]

Parkeria Hooker, Exot. Fl. 2: plate 147. 1825

Plants 2--120 cm. Stems 1--10 mm diam., sparsely scaly. Leaves erect. Proximal leaves broad, simple and lobed to 4-pinnate, glabrous; distal leaves finely dissected with linear ultimate segments. Sporangia nearly sessile, usually densely packed, globose. Spores tetrahedral.

Species 3--4 (3 in the flora): tropical, subtropical, and warm temperate regions worldwide.


DeVol, C. E. 1957. The geographical distribution of Ceratopteris pteridoides. Amer. Fern J. 47: 67--72. Hickok, L. G. 1977. Cytological relationships between three diploid species of the fern genus Ceratopteris Brongn. Canad. J. Bot. 55: 1660--1667. Hickok, L. G. and E. J. Klekowski Jr. 1974. Inchoate speciation in Ceratopteris: An analysis of the synthesized hybrid C. richardii × C. pteridoides. Evolution 28: 439--446.

1 Sterile leaves simple, palmately or pinnately lobed, sometimes 2--4-pinnate, deltate to cordate to ovate; proximal pinnae or veins of lobes usually opposite; petioles frequently inflated. Fertile leaves usually deltate to cordate to reniform; sporangia lacking annulus or annulus well developed, indurate cells 0--10(--40).   2 Ceratopteris pteridoides
+ Sterile leaves (1--)2--3-pinnate, lanceolate, lance-ovate, ovate to deltate; proximal pinnae usually alternate; petioles usually not inflated. Fertile leaves lanceolate, sometimes ovate, deltate, or cordate; sporangia with well-developed annulus, indurate cells 13--71.   (2)
2 (1) Sporangia with 32 spores.   1 Ceratopteris thalictroides
+ Sporangia with 16 spores.   3 Ceratopteris richardii

Lower Taxa


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