Chapter

Pteridophytes and Gymnosperms

Volume 1 of the series The Families and Genera of Vascular Plants pp 69-74

Cyatheaceae

  • K. U. Kramer

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Abstract

Large to very large, less often medium-sized, terrestrial ferns with short to usually long, erect, slender to robust, apically scaly stem; stele radially symmetric, forming a complicated dictyostele with much sclerenchyma on both sides of the bundles, often with accessory medullary and cortical bundles; the surface often bearing a cover of densely matted adventitious roots, rarely spiny, the leaf scars prominent, often the upper part with petiole base remnants, rarely branched. Leaves forming a rosette; petioles usually close, stout, short to long, bearing scales often inserted on wart- to spine-like epidermal outgrowths, mostly hairy in addition, the adaxial side flattened to sulcate and, with few exceptions, like the other leaf axes bearing antrorse, septate hairs, laterally with 1 (−3) discontinuous lines of pale pneumathodes; petiole bases sometimes with so-called aphlebiae (see below). Lamina pinnate to (more often) bipinnate (+ pinnatifid), herbaceous to coriaceous, usually large, often oblong or deltoid, truncate at the base or the lower pinnae somewhat to (less often) strongly and gradually reduced; leaf architecture entirely catadromous.