186. Polystichum houchangense Ching ex P. S. Wang, Guizhou Sci. 12(2): 55. 1994.
猴场耳蕨 hou chang er jue
Plants evergreen. Rhizome erect, short, 2-4 cm in diam. including stipe bases, rhizome apex and basal stipe densely scaly; scales brown, ovate-lanceolate, up to 5 mm, membranous, weakly serrulate. Fronds 40-70 cm; stipe stramineous, 7-20 cm, 1-1.5 mm in diam., sparsely scaly from basal stipe to rachis; scales similar to basal stipe scales but gradually becoming smaller, and mixed with smaller scales; smaller scales brown, appressed, narrowly lanceolate, bases cuneate, margins with a few long teeth, apices long caudate. Lamina 1-pinnate, grayish green when dry, adaxially darker, narrowly elliptic-lanceolate, 20-45 × 2-3.8 cm at middle, slightly contracted toward base, acuminate; rachis without proliferous bulbils, stramineous. Pinnae 30-60 pairs, alternate, sessile, lowest pairs remote, otherwise contiguous to imbricate, ± reflexed except near apex, oblong-lanceolate, 1-2 cm × 3-7 mm at middle, basal part of pinnae as wide or nearly as wide as upper part, apices acute, bases obviously asymmetrical, acroscopic base wider and with ± deltoid auricles, apex of auricles acute and shortly spinulose, proximal margins of auricles truncate, parallel to rachis or slightly overlapping rachis, margins of pinnae regularly toothed, teeth open, apices obtuse or acute, shortly spinulose or sometimes only repand, basiscopic margins entire below middle, cuneate, angled upward above middle, toothed, teeth acute or obtuse apically; adaxially glabrous, abaxially sparsely scaly, microscales appressed or not, light brown, lanceolate, margins slightly toothed; frond texture thickly papery. Sori small, terminal on shorter veinlets, 1 row on each side of midrib of pinna, close to margins, often 4-10 above midrib, 1-3 below midrib near apex; indusia present, light brown, thick, subentire, evanescent.
● Wet cliffs inside limestone caves; ca. 1200 m. C Guizhou (Anshun, Ziyun).
Polystichum houchangense is similar to P. consimile, but it has conform stipe scales, longer laminae, and sessile pinnae up to 60 pairs.