Dryopteris purpurella

Synonyms Dryopteris erythrosora var. purpurascens, D. indusiata var. purpurascens Epithet means "purplish."

Evergreen, 2V2 to 3 ft. (75 to 90 cm). Zones 6 to 9. Apogamous.

description: The rhizome is erect and the open vase of fronds is one-third or more stipe, sparsely dressed in dark scales. The bipinnate blade with upwards of six pairs of pinnae is broadly triangular and narrows towards the apex. The new growth is fleetingly glossed in a metallic fuchsia-purple hue. (Leave town for a week and you may miss this distinction from D. erythrosora.) The sori are submarginal and covered with a kidney-shaped indusium.

range and habitat: Closely affiliated with Dryopteris ery-throsora, this fern is a denizen of forested areas in Japan, china, and Korea.

culture and comments: It is seriously questionable whether the true species is cultivated in Western gardens. The material distributed in the united States is beautiful but barely distinct from the equally attractive Dryopteris erythrosora. Comprehensive lists from Europe and Britain do not include this species. I can, however, recommend whatever passes for D. purpurella as a handsome addition to garden collections from the warmth of california to the chilly realms of the Mid-Atlantic states as well as warmer and more southerly Midwest

Dense black scales trim the fronds of Dryopteris polylepis.

Massive structure of the landscape heavyweight Dryopteris pseudofilix-mas.

Fleeting metallic appearance on young fronds of Dryopteris purpurella.

Dense black scales trim the fronds of Dryopteris polylepis.

Massive structure of the landscape heavyweight Dryopteris pseudofilix-mas.

Fleeting metallic appearance on young fronds of Dryopteris purpurella.

and East Coast states. Light shade and garden compost provide for its basic needs.

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