E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Dryopteris arguta (Kaulf.) Watt
coastal wood fern (coastal woodfern)
Dryopteridaceae (Wood Fern family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Deborah Freeman  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #25237)

E-Flora BC Static Map
Distribution of Dryopteris arguta
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Species Information

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Perennial in vase-like clusters from a stout, creeping rhizome.
Overwintering, oblong-lanceolate, broadest in the middle and narrowed towards the top and less towards the bottom, 20-60 cm long, 5-25 cm wide, 1-pinnate, the pinnae deeply cut; segments with small, spiny teeth along the margin.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

Habitat / Range

Mesic forest margins and rocky sea cliffs in the lowland zone; rare in SW BC; S to CA, disjunct in AZ.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Dryopteris arguta

The table below shows the species-specific information calculated from
original data (BEC database) provided by the BC Ministry of Forests and Range.
(Updated August, 2013)

Site Information
Value / Class




Elevation (metres) 230 490 750
Slope Gradient (%) 0 27 55
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
336 335 336
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
4 4 5
Modal Nutrient Regime
Number of field plots
 species was recorded in:
Modal BEC Zone Class
All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in: CWH(1)


The climate type for this species, as reported in the: "British Columbia plant species codes and selected attributes. Version 6 Database" (Meidinger et al. 2008), is cool mesothermal.

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

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General References