Monographs Details: Hemionitis
Authority: Proctor, George R. 1989. Ferns of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Mem. New York Bot. Gard. 53: 1-389.
Scientific Name:Hemionitis
Description:Species Description - Small tenestrial soft-herbaceous fems. Rhizomes short-creeping to erect, bearing numerous lax, thin scales intermixed with pluricellular hairs. Fronds somewhat dimorphic (in our species), the sterile ones tending to be short-stalked and spreading, the fertile ones long-stalked and rigidly erect; stipes dark lustrous purple-brown or black. Blades palmately (ours) or pedately lobed or else pinnately compound; divisions broad and nearly or quite entire; veins free or anastomosing (ours) to form elongate-polygonal areoles which lack included free veinlets. Sporangia in copious superficial lines, following the course of veins throughout the abaxial side of fertile blades; indusium and paraphyses absent; annulus of 14-20 cells; spores globose or tetrahedral-globose, trilete, the surface cristate, echinate, or tuberculate.


Type Species. Hemionitis palmata Linnaeus, of tropical America.

A small genus restricted by Tryon and Tryon (1982) to seven neotropical species; an earlier treatment by Mickel (1974) included several others from the Old World tropics. The generic name is derived from the Greek hemionos, mule, because an Old World fem species (now placed in Asplenium) was worn in ancient times as a charm against pregnancy.

Special Literature. Mickel, J. T. 1974. A redefinition ofthe genus Hemionitis. Amer. Fem J. 64: 3-12, figs. 1-46; Tryon, R. M . & A. F. Tryon. 1982. Ferns and allied plants, pp. 278-284, 20 figs