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

Thelypteris palustris

Common name
Marsh fern
Thelypteris palustris
Latin names
Class
Pteridopsida
Order
Polypodiales
Family
Thelypteridaceae
Genus
Thelypteris
Species
palustris
Geographic details
Habitat
wetlands
Soil type
tolerant
Distribution
Throughout British Isles
Native
Yes

Dryopteris affinis robusta

Common name
Robust Scaly Male Fern
Dryopteris affinis robusta
Latin names
Class
Pteridopsida
Order
Polypodiales
Family
Aspidiaceae
Genus
Dryopteris
Species
affinis
Subspecies
robusta
Alternative Family name
Dryopteridaceae
Geographic details
Habitat
Woodland, open hill, scree
Soil type
alkaline
Distribution
Throughout British Isles
Native
Yes

Gymnocarpium robertianum

Common name
Limestone Oak Fern
Gymnocarpium robertianum
Latin names
Class
Pteridopsida
Order
Polypodiales
Family
Aspidiaceae
Genus
Gymnocarpium
Species
robertianum
Geographic details
Habitat
wet rocks and walls
Soil type
alkaline
Distribution
SW W England Ireland Wales
Native
Yes