Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Hairy Lipfern - Myriopteris lanosa   (Michaux) Grusz & Windham
Members of Pteridaceae:
Members of Myriopteris with account distribution info or public map:
Google Images
Section 2 » Family Pteridaceae
Show/Hide Synonym
Author(Michaux) Grusz & Windham
DistributionLimited to the Mountains and Piedmont, with scattered populations over both of these provinces.

This is an Eastern species, from CT west to WI, south to central GA and OK, with a few scattered records farther southward. It is absent from the Coastal Plain.
AbundanceInfrequent across the mountains and Piedmont, rarely locally fairly common. Quite scarce in the far northeastern Piedmont.
HabitatThis is a species limited to rock outcrops, both on flat surfaces (such as around granitic flatrocks) and on near-vertical ones, such as cliffs. The rocks can be of a great array of types, though it favors calcareous or mafic rocks, less so on somewhat felsic ones such as granite. The similar M. tomentosa often grows with it on the more neutral to high pH soils around calcareous or mafic rocks but is mostly absent around granitic rocks (with their acidic soil).
PhenologyFruits from June to September.
IdentificationThis is a somewhat small fern of rock surfaces, with a narrow blade. The stipe is blackish and wiry, but still quite hairy/hirsute, about 4 inches long, but shorter than the blade, which is about 6 inches long but barely 1.5 inches wide. The blades are quite hairy, especially below, bipinnate-pinnatifid, at times almost tripinnate. There are only about 7-10 pairs of pinnae, green above, mostly opposite or sub-opposite. The sori are in a row along the margins of the pinnules on the blade underside, though the decurved (rolled-under) leaf margins do not cover up sight of them (as in the more rolled-under leaves of M. tomentosa). This latter species often grows near M. lanosa on the same rocks, but that species has a pale whitish-green (and very hairy) frond, stipe and rachis with some flattened scales plus hairs, versus no such scales in M. lanosa; more obvious is the strongly rolled-under leaf margins that typically hide the sori from view.
Taxonomic CommentsThe former NC species in the genus Cheilanthes have recently been moved over to the genus Myriopteris.

Other Common Name(s)None
State RankS4
Global RankG5
State Status
US Status
USACE-agcp
USACE-emp
County Map - click on a county to view source of record.
Select a source
AllHerbaria
Select an occurrence type
AllCollection_natural