This deciduous fern grows on moderately to very acidic, well- to poorly-drained substrates. Habitats include deciduous and coniferous woodland, hedgerows, ditches, open moorland, rocky slopes, boulder scree and rock fissures. It can also be epiphytic in damp climates. 0-1050 m (N. of Loch Rannoch, Mid Perth), and reportedly to 1125 m in Scotland.
The distribution of this species in the majority of its range is stable. In East Anglia it has become more frequent since 1930, as a decline in woodland management has increased the shade and humidity of woods and as it has invaded conifer plantations (Perring et al. 1964; Simpson, 1982).
European Temperate element.
Light (Ellenberg): 5
Moisture (Ellenberg): 6
Reaction (Ellenberg): 4
Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 5
Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0
January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.5
July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 14.4
Annual Precipitation (mm): 1114
Height (cm): 150
Perennation - primary
Life Form - primary
Clonality - primary
Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 2689
Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 932
Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 11
Atlas Change Index: 1.32
Weighted Changed Factor: -2
Weighted Change Factor Confidence (90%)
Atlas text references
1988. Comparative Plant Ecology.
1986. Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
Jalas & Suominen (1972)
1978. Ferns and their allies. The Island of Mull: a survey of its flora and environment. :12.1-12.7.
1965. Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropäischen Flora. Volume 1. 2 vols.
1997. The ferns of Britain and Ireland, edn 2.