Glen Parva & Glenhills Nature Reserve - Species List

Key to the list at the end of each section:
Black - Bio Blitz 2015 not photographed
Blue - Bio Blitz 2015 photographed
Red - photographed & identified by Volunteers
Green - from NatureSpot
All pictures are taken on the reserve.
Hover over the following pictures to enlarge

Ferns & Horsetails

Ferns - they mostly belong to the Class Leptosporangiata (or Pteridopsida). This includes most of those you see in gardens and woods. The horsetails belong to another class, the Equisetopsida, which was extremely important in the Carboniferous period. Only one genus survives. The other classes of fern are also quite small today.
Ferns do not have waxes or special cells on their surface that keep water from evaporating but do have roots, stems, leaves. Their stems may form runners, called stolons above the ground, or rhizomes below ground. The leaves are green and large, and may bear spores on the underside. Some ferns can grow large in moist places. They can survive in more places than moss, but not so many as flowering plants.

Hart's Tongue Fern - Phyllitis scolopendrium
John F north and west ditch 20131208

The plants are unusual in being ferns with simple, undivided fronds. The tongue-shaped leaves have given rise to the common name "Hart's tongue fern"; a hart being an adult male red deer. The sori pattern is reminiscent of a centipede's legs, and scolopendrium is Latin for "centipede". The leaves are 10–60 cm long and 3–6 cm broad, with sori arranged in rows perpendicular to the rachis.
The plants grow on neutral and lime-rich substrates, including moist soil and damp crevices in old walls, most commonly in shaded situations but occasionally in full sun; plants in full sun are usually stunted and yellowish in colour, while those in full shade are dark green and luxuriant
Horsetail (Emerging)- Equisetum arvense
John F Map A F7 20140406

This shows the reproductive cone. In E. arvense the cone appears before the leaves. This is a garden weed but I wish that we didn't have it here - it is one of the most difficult plants to remove as the roots appear to go down to somewhere near the magma layer.
Externally it was traditionally used for chilblains and wounds. It was also once used to polish pewter and wood and to strengthen fingernails. It is also an abrasive. It was used by Hurdy-Gurdy players to dress the wheels of their instruments by removing resin build up
Soft Shield Fern - Polystichum setiferum
John F Oct 2016

It lives in damp shady places and its fronds are 60-150 cm long.
Pinnules as in bottom picture; only likely to be confused with Hard Shield Fern. The difference is that on Soft SF the majority of pinnules on a pinna from near the middle of the frond form an angle of 90º or more at their base, at which point there is a short stalk connecting the pinnule to the pinna midrib. In Hard SF the angle is less than 90º and the stalk is absent or is simply a narrowing of the pinnule. Hybrids between the two have been recorded.
Fronds as soft as on the average fern, not at all glossy or stiff like Hard SF. Darkness or paleness is no guide to id. Tips of pinnules hair-pointed. Lowest pinnae typically about as long as middle ones.
Bio Blitz ------ 26-06-2015 blue & black

Field Horsetail - Equisetum arvense

Hart's-tongue - Asplenium scolopendrium
Male-fern - Dryopteris filix-mas
Soft Shield Fern - Polystichum setiferum
Wall-rue - Asplenium ruta-muraria
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