Perennial from a slender, black-tinged rhizome.
Oval, 5-30 cm long, oval in outline, borne on smooth dark stipes, pinnately 2- to 3-times divided, the segments fan-shaped, 0.5-3 cm long, 0.5-3 cm wide, obtusely lobed.
If more than one illustration is available for a species (e.g., separate illustrations were provided for two subspecies) then links to the separate images will be provided below. Note that individual subspecies or varietal illustrations are not always available.
Illustration Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia
Present from Summer to Fall
Source: The USDA
||Value / Class
Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
of field plots
species was recorded in:
BEC Zone Class
All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in
Source: Klinkenberg 2013
Synonyms and Alternate Names:
Adiantum capillus-veneris var. modestum (Underw.) Fernald
Adiantum capillus-veneris var. protrusum Fernald
Adiantum modestum Underw.
Adiantum capillus-veneris can be distinguished from Adiantum aleuticum, the only other Adiantum species in B.C., by its lax drooping habit, unbranched stem, arrangement of pinnae on both sides of the stem, and pinnules that are oval to fan-shaped (Brunton 1984). A. aleuticum is a taller, upright fern, which has a palmately-branched (equally two-forked) stem with oblong, almost rectangular (2-4 times longer than wide) pinnules. The two Adiantum species are not likely to be confused because they occupy different habitats: A. aleuticum occupies shaded acidic woods and rocky slopes while A. capillus-veneris is a calciphile, growing in seepy sites on calcareous rocks, including tufa (Brunton 1984).
Source: British Columbia Conservation Data Centre