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2. Alsophila R. Brown, Prodr. 158. 1810.

桫椤属 suo luo shu

Gymnosphaera Blume.

Plants treelike; trunk erect, rarely branching, or creeping, shrublike, apices covered with scales. Fronds large; stipe stramineous, dark brown, or black, smooth, spiny, or warty; scales brown or dark brown, margin differentiated; lamina 1-3-pinnate; veins simple or forked. Sori orbicular, dorsal on veinlets; indusia various in form or absent, paraphyses present. x = 69.

About 230 species: pantropical, extending into the S temperate zone as far as the subantarctic Auckland Islands; plants of cold or wet montane forests, on slopes or in ravines, and low canopy, middle understory, or ground cover; 20 species in Asia; 12 species (one endemic) in China.

Most species have an indusium, but this structure may be lost as the frond matures; in some species, the indusium is absent. The Chinese species in Alsophila subg. Alsophila all have an indusium; the species of A. subg. Gymnosphaera (Blume) Q. Xia are all without an indusium.

1 Stipes stramineous, pale green, or brown, spiny or warty; fertile and sterile pinnules almost same size; lateral veinlets forked, bearing sori at forks; indusia developed, sometimes very small, scalelike, covered by sorus when mature; 16 spores per sporangium (A. subg. Alsophila)   (2)
+ Stipes, rachises, and costae black or red-brown, not spiny (except A. austroyunnanensis), slightly warty; fertile pinnules or segments normally narrow and smaller than sterile ones; veins simple; sorus without indusium; 64 spores per sporangium (A. subg. Gymnosphaera)   (6)
2 (1) Abaxial side of midvein of pinnules and segments with pale acicular hairs.   1 A. costularis
+ Abaxial side of midvein of pinnules and segments glabrous   (3)
3 (2) Indusia enveloping sori   (4)
+ Indusia almost covered by sori at base   (5)
4 (3) Stipes spiny; indusia open toward midveins.   2 A. spinulosa
+ Stipes not spiny; indusia not open toward midveins.   3 A. loheri
5 (3) Indusia flat, margin toothed.   4 A. latebrosa
+ Indusia scalelike.   5 A. fenicis
6 (1) Fronds dimorphic, or pinnae dimorphic; fertile pinnules or segments narrow; stipes spiny at base.   12 A. austroyunnanensis
+ Fronds monomorphic; stipes not spiny at base   (7)
7 (6) Lateral abaxial sides of stipes and rachises with spreading brown scales   (8)
+ Lateral abaxial sides of stipes and rachises without spreading brown scales   (9)
8 (7) Both sides of frond with acicular hairs.   6 A. andersonii
+ Both sides of frond glabrous.   7 A. gigantea
9 (7) Pinnules shallowly pinnatifid but not reaching halfway to costae, or only crenate.   8 A. podophylla
+ Pinnules pinnatifid more than halfway to costae   (10)
10 (9) Small scales on abaxial side of pinnules flat, not bullate.   11 A. khasyana
+ Small scales on abaxial side of pinnules bullate   (11)
11 (10) Scales at stipe base concolorous, golden-yellow; bullate scales on abaxial sides of costae and midveins of pinnules and segments, with a prominent dark tip.   9 A. denticulata
+ Scales at stipe base bicolorous, dark brown, with rather wide paler margins; bullate scales on abaxial side of costae, toward apex with acicular hairs.   10 A. metteniana

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