Whatzit and is it native?

digginfoolJune 12, 2009

Found this while trying to get rid of Johnson grass in a very shady and moist area. Should I leave it or pluck it out?

Here is a link that might be useful: Need a hint

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lycopus(z5 NY)

Looks like Northern Adder's-tongue (Ophioglossum pusillum). It is a species of fern. Definitely would leave it.

    Bookmark   June 12, 2009 at 8:59PM
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Ophioglossum for sure.
The folded leaves and sporangia structure suggests it might be O. engelmanii. But it's habitat is limited to areas where there is alkaline soil or a limestone substrate. If your soil isn't alkaline, then O. pusillum is the correct species.
The other KY native, O. vulgatum, does not have a long tapered leaf base.

Not a good idea to try moving them, as they feed on soil fungi and appear to be doing quite well in that location.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2009 at 1:04AM
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Thanks. I suspect it might be the southern version after a bit of searching. The University of Tenn. website has a photo that looks exactly identical to mine but calls it Southern Adder's Tongue. (Ophioglossum vulgatum)
No worries about moving it, it's the Johnson grass surrounding it that going to be leaving the area.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2009 at 3:35AM
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Looks just like my Southern Adder's tongue, just about my favorite plant in the woods. They spread quire well when they are happy.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2009 at 9:06PM
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