Flora von Deutschland




pronounced: ass-plee-nee-AY-see-eye

the spleenwort family

Asplenium, the name of the only genus in this family, is from the Greek ασπληνος (asplenos), literally, ‘without spleen’, the spleenwort, allegedly a curative of spleen problems. This is a huge, extremely diverse genus of ferns which has so far defied attempts to subdivide it. These plants are popular with plant evolutionists, field naturalists and fern gardeners, not only because of the interesting morphology of the plants, but also because of their remarkable ability to form spectacular hybrids, often combining dramatically different leaf shapes.



Illustration via Wikimedia commons