Raffles Museum of Biodiversity Research

Davallia denticulata (Burm.) Mett., 1867

Kingdom:Plantae
Phylum/Division:Filicophyta
Class:Pteridopsida
Order:Polypodiales
Family:Davalliaceae
Genus:Davallia
Species:D. denticulata
Common Names:Rabbit's-foot Fern
Status:Common

Description

This is a large epiphytic fern with a long, fleshy, creeping rhizome that is slightly flattened and covered in scales. The roots are found on the ventral surface of the rhizome. The fronds are bipinnate, alternate and in two rows along the rhizome. The stipe is 4-50 cm long bearing a broadly triangular frond, 30-60 x 13-50 cm, bipinnate to quadripinnate; and the pinnae broadly deltoid. The largest pinnae are 8-45 x 5-30 cm, tapering to a long point; and the largest pinnules are triangular, 0.7-20 x 0.4-11 cm. The ultimate segment is linear or narrowly ovate, 0.5-2.7 x 0.2-0.6 cm and variously lobed. Fertile lobes are with narrower segments, the sori are separate, several borne on a segment at the forking point of the veins. The indusium is pouch-shaped and 1-1.3 x 0.5-1 mm.

Read more about the Polypodiales order.
Read more about the Davalliaceae family.

Distribution

From tropical and southern Africa, Madagascar, Indian Ocean islands, Sri Lanka, India, Thailand, Myanmar, Hainan Island, Indochina and throughout Malesia, Queensland to the Pacific Islands.

Localities

Most parts of Singapore where there are large old trees.

Locality Map

General Biology

This is a common epiphyte of trees in open areas, especially by the roadsides.

Life Cycle

For an account of the life history of a fern, see Pyrrosia piloselloides.

Human Uses

The fronds are popular in flower arrangements and commonly used in flower bouquets.

References

de Winter, W. P. & V. B. Amoroso (eds.), 2003. Plant resources of South-East Asia No. 15(2). Cryptogams: Ferns and fern allies. Prosea Foundation, Borgor, Indonesia. 268 pp.

Holttum, R. E., 1966. A revised flora of Malaya. II Ferns of Malaya. Govt. Printing Office, Singapore (2nd ed.). 653 pp.

Parris, B. S., R. Khew, R. C. K. Chung, L. G. Saw & E. Soepadmo (eds.), 2010. Flora of Peninsular Malaysia. Series I: Ferns and Lycophytes. Vol. 1. Malayan Forest records No. 48. Forest Research Institute of Malaysia, Kepong. 249 pp.

Wee, Y. C., 2005. Ferns of the tropics. Times Editions-Marshall Cavendish, Singapore. 2nd ed. 190 pp.

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