Lecanopteris pumila Blume




Lecanopteris pumila Blume, Fl. Javae t. 94B. 1851; Gay et al., Gard. Bull. Sing. 45: 305. 1994 [‘1993’]; Hennipman & Hovenkamp, Fl. Males., Ser. II, Ferns and Fern Allies 3: 70, f. 12c. 1998, Lindsay & Middleton, Thai For. Bull. (Bot.) 37: 59, f. 1. 2009. – Lecanopteris carnosa var. pumila (Blume) Alderw., Bull. Dép. Agric. Indes Néerl. 27: 3. 1909; Holttum, Rev. Fl. Malaya ed. 1, 2: 210, t. 110. 1955 [‘1954’]. – Type: Blume, Fl. Javae, pl. 94b (1851).


Rhizome creeping and much branched, 1.5–2.5 cm thick, fleshy, hollow and ant-inhabited; bright pale green when young, blackening with age, glabrous except for a few scattered scales and hairs at apices and, occasionally, persistent in protected grooves of older parts. Rhizome scales small, dark, somewhat round and with a strongly dentate margin, 0.2–0.4 mm diameter. Rhizome hairs also small, 0.1–0.2 mm long, simple or once-branched (“Y” shaped), dark brown and glandular. Fronds stalked, pinnatifid, entirely glabrous, 19–40 cm long, 5–9 cm wide, arising from phyllopodia. Phyllopodia hollow, prominent, 0.5–1.5 cm high, sometimes replaced by solid spines. Stipes dark brown, glabrous, 7–15 cm long, 1.5–5 mm thick, narrowly winged towards the apex. Laminae oblong to slightly obovate, bright green, glabrous, thinly leathery, 12–25 cm long, 5–9 cm wide, deeply lobed (i.e. pinnatifid) to within 1 or 2 mm of the rachis, lobes separated by about their own width; anastomosing veins with included veinlets but these obscure or invisible in fresh fronds (where only rachis and costae are raised both surfaces and easily visible), visible in dry fronds, sterile lobes 2.0–4.5 cm long, 5.5–10 mm wide, usually widened somewhat above the base, edges entire, apex rounded to acute; fertile lobes 2.5–4.5 cm long, commonly 5–7 mm wide, the edges lobed, lobes rounded, 2–3 mm long and wide, separated by about their own width, each wholly occupied by a deeply sunken sorus and folded backwards towards the upper surface. Sporangia c. 0.3 mm long, on stalks to 0.5 mm long. Spores monolete , yellow.

Distribution in Thailand


Wider Distribution

Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra and Borneo.


Epiphytic on branches of trees in mid-montane and montane scrub forest, often in full sunshine. The rhizome can be quite substantial forming what Holttum (1954) described as “a crust” on and around branches. Altitude c.1050m – c.1700m.

Proposed IUCN Conservation Assessment

Least Concern (LC). Although this species is only known from one collection in Thailand it is in an area of extensive forest and is a widespread species in western Malesia.

Voucher specimens - Thailand

Middleton et al. 3676, Yala, Hala-Bala Wildlife Sanctuary (BKF).

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