Athyrium vidalii

Epithet is after Vidal.

Deciduous, 11/2 to 2V2 ft. (45 to 75 cm). Zones 5 (with protection) to 9.

description: The rhizome is erect. The colorful fuchsia-brownish stipes of one-half of the frond length have the typical swollen Athyrium base. Accompanying slender scales are linear. ovate blades with small spines are bipinnate to bipin-nate-pinnatifid. The 10 to 15 pairs of pinnae terminate in a constricted triangle at the apex. Sori and indusia are a half-moon to a hooked-J shape.

range and habitat: Athyrium vidalii is native to the needle-littered floors of coniferous forests in the mountains of Japan, Korea, China, and Taiwan.

culture and comments: This is similar to, but not as ebullient as, Athyrium otophorum and is especially showy in the rosy exuberance of spring growth. Unlike A. otophorum, it is fully, and early deciduous, and does not form an "ear" on the pinnules. It is easily established in woodland duff, and its light green and wine counterpoint pairs well with the somber dark greens in the landscape.

Flora of Japan (Iwatsuki et al. 1995) subdivides this species into three intermediate botanical formas—f. pulvigerum with hairy blades, f. viridans with nonhairy blades and green stipes, and f. vidalii with red-purple stipes.

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