fern for id.: 6 images.
Location: South-west Maharashtra, w. ghats.
Date- Jan end. 2022.
Habitat: Lithophytic, on water drenched rockface of waterfall.
- Rhizome: Long, creeping, thick (upto 6mm diam), flattened-cylindrical, green, smooth, no scales ??. Brown roots emerging out, thickly covered with small brown scales.
- Leaves: Stipe- cylindrical 0.5-1cm, winged for a considerable part. Small scales at base of stipe, having brown lace-like network. Lamina- simple, narrowly elliptic, 10-40 cm × 2-4cm, margin entire, apex acuminate, glabrous on both sides. Costa prominent, raised on both surfaces. Veins- Major ones prominent and distinct, 4-6 mm apart, zigzag, dichotomously branched but unclear network near margin. Areoles large, reaching upto midway from margin.
- Neolepisorus (Microsorum) zippelii
- Leptochilus axillaris, L. lanceolatus
iii. Loxogramme chinensis
- Lepisorus nudus
There are lots of genera that are Lithophytic & have a narrow elliptical lamina. Most are found in Tamil Nadu and Kerala, few in Karnataka, Maharashtra).
Considering the distribution and a few characters like the thick rhizome, prominence of costa, glabrous leaves (Vs Pyrrosia sp.), I have tried to strike out some genera -finally coming to 3-4 genera that seem likely. I have been severely hampered by obtaining juvenile plants, not finding any sori/ sporangium containing leaves.
- Antrophyum sp – mostly lack costa.
- Grammitis attenuata, Elaphoglossum sp.Oreogrammitis pilifera– distribution-further south in Tamil Nadu, Kerala.
- Pyrrosia sp have dense indument underneath.
If possible, please give me some simple hints to differentiate between all these genera having simple elliptical leaves and lithophytic/ epiphytic habitat (in case someday I happen to go further south).