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ADIANTUM VIRIDIMONTANUM, A NEW MAIDENHAIR FERN IN EASTERN NORTH AMERICA

Cathy A. Paris
Rhodora
Vol. 93, No. 874 (April 1991), pp. 105-121
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/23312786
Page Count: 17
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ADIANTUM VIRIDIMONTANUM, A NEW MAIDENHAIR FERN IN EASTERN NORTH AMERICA
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Abstract

Recent systematic work on the Adiantum pedatum L. complex has demonstrated that the serpentine maidenhair fern in eastern North America, to which the name A. pedatum L. var. aleuticum Rupr. has traditionally been applied, is a disjunct member of the western North American lineage, a lineage divergent at the species level from the typical maidenhairs of the eastern woodlands. Also present in eastern North America is a previously unrecognized tetraploid species, the allopolyploid derivative of a sterile hybrid between the serpentine and the typical maidenhair ferns. Here a description of the new species is provided and a new combination is proposed for the western North American maidenhairs, including the disjunct serpentine populations in eastern North America. Although phenotypic plasticity, the existence of the previously unrecognized allotetraploid, and the presence of backcross hybrids have obscured species boundaries, the three species in North America are morphologically distinct and can be reliably separated using non-technical characters.

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