Platycerium bifurcatum—Elkhorn—POLYPODIACEAE

Platycerium bifurcatum

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Habitat—Widespread, usually epiphytic in rainforest.

Distribution— North from Mimosa Rocks National Park in New South Wales to Queensland. Also on Lord Howe Island and New Guinea.

Description—Clumping fern, clumps enlarging. A bracket epiphyte or occassionally lithophytic, rhizome much branched.

Local occurrences

Australis Resort, Barrington/Gloucester Tops, Bennett Head, Black Head, Black Head Flora Park, Booti Hill, Cape Hawke, Cellito, Coocumbac Island, Copeland, Darawank Nature Reserve and Wetland, Diamond Beach, Diamond Beach LRF, Dixon Property, Elizabeth Beach, Forster Cemetery, Knappinghat Nature Reserve, Red Head, Reservoir Hill Reserve, Sea Acres National Park, Seven Mile Beach and Green Point, Stephen Street Reserve, Talawahl Nature Reserve, The Islands, Tiona, Waitui Falls, Wallingat National Park and Wingham Brush.

Fronds.—Sterile 'nest leaves' 12 to 30 cm wide, the upper part rounded, the margin sinuate or obtusely lobed, becoming brown and papery with age. Fertile fronds usually 25 to 90 cm long, ± erect or pendent, dichotomously divided 2 to 5 times, the ultimate segments narrow, 0.5 to 3 cm wide. Plantlets grow from buds on the outer lower margin and enable the clump to encirclethe tree trunk.

Platycerium bifurcatum
Platycerium bifurcatum

Sori.—sporangia in several patches, coveringall or the greater part of the ultimate segments.