Gymnocarpium dryopteris

Tracheophyta PteropsidaWoodsiaceaeGymnocarpiumGymnocarpium dryopteris


A gregarious, deciduous fern growing in rocky deciduous woodland and ravines, along stream banks, and on cliff ledges and stable block screes. It prefers moist but open, light-textured mineral soils with a high humus content, and tolerates a moderate range of pH. 0-915 m (Rannoch, Mid Perth).



World Distribution

Circumpolar Boreo-temperate element.

Broad Habitats

Light (Ellenberg): 4

Moisture (Ellenberg): 5

Reaction (Ellenberg): 4

Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 4

Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0

January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 2.2

July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 13.1

Annual Precipitation (mm): 1445

Height (cm): 35

Perennation - primary


Life Form - primary

Non-bulbous geophyte (rhizome, corm or tuber)



Clonality - primary

Rhizome far-creeping

Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 963

Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 10

Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 0

Atlas Change Index: -0.21

Weighted Changed Factor: -13

Weighted Change Factor Confidence (90%)


JNCC Designations


Atlas text references

Atlas (14c)
Curtis TGF, McGough HN
1988.  The Irish Red Data Book. 1. Vascular Plants.
Hultén E, Fries M
1986.  Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols.
Jalas & Suominen (1972)
Bangerter EB, Cannon JFM, Jermy AC
1978.  Ferns and their allies. The Island of Mull: a survey of its flora and environment. :12.1-12.7.
Meusel H, Jäger E, Weinert E
1965.  Vergleichende Chorologie der zentraleuropäischen Flora. Volume 1. 2 vols.
Page CN
1997.  The ferns of Britain and Ireland, edn 2.