Pteridophyta or Ferns

Adder's tongue
Beech fern

In the British Isles the Phylum Pteridophyta is represented by about 64 native species which are taxonomically classified into two Classes, five Orders, fourteen Families and twenty-four Genera.

This site aims to clarify and explain these relationships and provide information about the native species found in the British Isles. There is a Ferns search facility which aims to ease identification of specimens, you can Browse a list of species and there is a searcheable Glossary of botanical terms.

If you click on any of the images of ferns on this page you will see a slideshow of images and there are some more images in the Image Gallery.

Hard shield-fern
Lady fern

Some random samples

Ophioglossum azoricum

Common name
Small adder's tongue
Ophioglossum azoricum
Latin names
Class
Psilotopsida
Order
Ophioglossales
Family
Ophioglossaceae
Genus
Ophioglossum
Species
azoricum
Geographic details
Habitat
Maritime
Soil type
alkaline
Distribution
N and W Britain
Native
Yes

Asplenium ruta-muraria

Common name
Wall Rue
Asplenium ruta-muraria
Latin names
Class
Pteridopsida
Order
Polypodiales
Family
Aspleniaceae
Genus
Asplenium
Species
ruta-muraria
Geographic details
Habitat
rock faces
Soil type
tolerant
Distribution
Throughout British Isles
Native
Yes

Dryopteris expansa

Common name
Northern Buckler Fern
Dryopteris expansa
Latin names
Class
Pteridopsida
Order
Polypodiales
Family
Aspidiaceae
Genus
Dryopteris
Species
expansa
Alternative Family name
Dryopteridaceae
Alternative Species name
assimilis
Geographic details
Habitat
damp upland woods and scree
Soil type
tolerant
Distribution
scattered in uplands
Native
Yes