Aleuritopteris farinosa (Forssk) Fée

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Aleuritopteris farinosa

Photo: Bart Wursten
Chisanga Falls, Nyika National Park

Aleuritopteris farinosa

Photo: Bart Wursten
Chisanga Falls, Nyika National Park

Aleuritopteris farinosa

Photo: Bart Wursten
Chisanga Falls, Nyika National Park

Aleuritopteris farinosa

Photo: Bart Wursten
Chisanga Falls, Nyika National Park

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Species details: Click on each item to see an explanation of that item (Note: opens a new window)

Synonyms: Allosorus farinosus (Forssk.) C.Presl.
Cassebeera farinosa (Forssk.) J.Sm.
Cheilanthes farinosa (Forssk.) Kaulf.
Pteris farinosa Forssk.
Common names:
Status: Native
Rhizome short, erect, up to 10 mm in diameter, rhizome scales dark-brown, entire, up to 7 mm in length, margins pale. Fronds tufted, erect, arching, herbaceous or thinly coriaceous, up to 40 cm long. Stipe black to castaneous, shiny, with scattered brown scales up to 7 mm long. Lamina lanceolate to narrowly ovate in outline, up to 390 × 180 mm, 2 to 3-pinnatifid; pinnae glabrous, dark matt green above, covered with a white or sometimes pale, yellow powder beneath. Lower pinnae larger than the ones above and more or less basiscopically developed; upper pinnae oblong, decurrent; ultimate lobes oblong, rounded, minutely toothed. Rhachis, costae, costules shiny black and glabrous. Sori small, marginal, in discrete or continuous clusters; indusium small, semi-transparent, variously lacerate.
Notes: The powdery underside makes it easy to distinguish this fern from other species.
Derivation of specific name: farinosa: mealy, referring to the powdery substance on the undersurface of the leaves.
Habitat: On rocks in places moistened by dripping water or on the floor and tree branches in evergreen forest sprayed by waterfalls.
Altitude range: 770 - 1770 m
Worldwide distribution: From China through much of Asia to North Africa going southwards to angola, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Malawi.
Malawi distribution: N,C,S
Growth form(s): Epiphyte, lithophyte, terrestrial.
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species
Content last updated: Wednesday 29 August 2018

Burrows, J.E. (1990). Southern African Ferns and Fern Allies. Frandsen, Sandton. Page 128. C. farinosa (Includes a picture).

Burrows, J.E. & Burrows, S.M. (1993). An annotated check-list of the pteridophytes of Malawi Kirkia 14(1) Page 87.

Burrows, J.E. & Willis, C.K. (eds) (2005). Plants of the Nyika Plateau Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 31 SABONET, Pretoria Page 40. as Cheilanthes farinosa (Includes a picture).

Dowsett-Lemaire, F. (1989). The flora and phytogeography of the evergreen forests of Malawi. I: Afromontane and mid-altitude forests; Bull. Jard. Bot. Nat. Belg. 59(1/2) Page 25. As Cheilantes farinosa

Jacobsen, W.B.G. (1983). The Ferns and Fern Allies of Southern Africa. Butterworths, Durban and Pretoria. Pages 247 - 248. As C. farinosa (Includes a picture).

Kornas, J. (1979). Distribution and ecology of the Pteridophytes in Zambia Polska Akademia Nauk Wydzial II Nauk Biologicznych Pages 47 - 48. As C. farinosa

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 9.

Roux, J.P. (2001). Conspectus of Southern African Pteridophyta. Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report 13 Page 68. (Includes a picture).

Roux, J.P. (2009). Synopsis of the Lycopodiophyta and Pteridophyta of Africa, Madagascar and neighbouring islands Page 179.

Schelpe, E.A.C.L.E. (1970). Pteridophyta Flora Zambesiaca Page 122. As C. farinosa

Other sources of information about Aleuritopteris farinosa:

Our websites:

Flora of Botswana: Aleuritopteris farinosa
Flora of Zambia: Aleuritopteris farinosa
Flora of Zimbabwe: Aleuritopteris farinosa

External websites:

African Plants: A Photo Guide (Senckenberg): Aleuritopteris farinosa
BHL (Biodiversity Heritage Library): Aleuritopteris farinosa
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Aleuritopteris farinosa
ePIC (electronic Plant Information Center): Aleuritopteris farinosa
Flora Zambesiaca web site: Aleuritopteris farinosa
GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): Aleuritopteris farinosa
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
GRIN (Germplasm Resources Information Network): Aleuritopteris farinosa
iNaturalist: Aleuritopteris farinosa
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Aleuritopteris farinosa
JSTOR Plant Science: Aleuritopteris farinosa
Kew Herbarium catalogue: Aleuritopteris farinosa
Mansfeld World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops: Aleuritopteris farinosa
Plants of the World Online: Aleuritopteris farinosa
Tropicos: Aleuritopteris farinosa
Wikipedia: Aleuritopteris farinosa

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2014-23

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2023). Flora of Malawi: Species information: Aleuritopteris farinosa., retrieved 21 March 2023

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