Subordinate Taxa
Scientific Name:
Loxsoma R.Br. ex Hook. in Cunningham, Companion Bot. Mag. 2: 366, t. 31, 32 (1837), nom. cons. – as Loxoma
From the Greek loxos (oblique), and soma (belt), a reference to the oblique or slanting annulus on the sporangium. On one of the type sheets at K (photo WELT E473/14) there is a label in Cunningham’s hand giving the derivation as “Loxsoma λοξοσ obliquus, λωμα [in error for σωμα] instita, a belt”.

Terrestrial ferns. Rhizomes long-creeping, bearing multicellular hairs. Fronds monomorphic, not articulated to rhizome. Laminae 2-pinnate-pinnatifid to 3-pinnate-pinnatifid or rarely 4-pinnate at base, anadromous, herbaceous to coriaceous, glabrous. Veins free. Sori terminal on veins at margins of lamina; paraphyses present; indusia urceolate; receptacles elongate and exserted, maturation of sporangia gradate. Spores trilete, rugose and pitted.


One species endemic to New Zealand.

Indigenous (Endemic)
Number of species in New Zealand within Loxsoma R.Br. ex Hook.
Indigenous (Endemic)1

n = 50 (Brownsey 1975). This number, and n = 46 in Loxsomopsis (Kramer 1990), are unusual base numbers for ferns and are not easily aligned with those in related families.


Loxsoma is one of only three endemic fern genera in New Zealand. It is distinguished from Loxsomopsis by its more highly divided fronds, which can be tinged blue-green or white on the underside, are glabrous, and have the basal basiscopic secondary pinnae longer than the acroscopic on the basal primary pinnae.

Alfarhan, A.H.; Sivadasan, M.; Thomas, J. 2009: (1912) Proposal to conserve the name Loxsoma (Loxsomataceae). Taxon 58(4): 1370–1371.
Brownsey, P.J. 1975: A chromosome count in Loxsoma. New Zealand Journal of Botany 13: 355–360.
Brownsey, P.J.; Perrie, L.R. 2015: Loxsomataceae. In: Breitwieser, I; Heenan, P.B.; Wilton, A.D. (ed.) Flora of New Zealand — Ferns and Lycophytes. Fascicle 7. Manaaki Whenua Press, Lincoln.
Brownsey, P.J.; Smith-Dodsworth, J.C. 2000: New Zealand ferns and allied plants. Edition 2. David Bateman, Auckland.
Cunningham, A. 1837: Florae insularum Novae Zelandiae precursor; or a specimen of the botany of the islands of New Zealand. Companion to the Botanical Magazine 2: 222–233, 327–336, 358–378.
Earp, C. 2016: Cunningham’s Florae Insularum Novae Zelandiae Precursor and the correct author of the fern genus Loxsoma nom. cons. New Zealand Journal of Botany 54(3): 366–376.
Kramer, K.U. 1990: Loxomataceae. In: Kramer, K.U.; Green, P.S. Pteridophytes and gymnosperms. Vol. 1. In: Kubitzki, K. (ed.) The Families and Genera of Vascular Plants. Springer-Verlag, Berlin.
Kramer, K.U.; Green, P.S. 1990: Pteridophytes and gymnosperms. Kubitzki, K. (ed.) The Families and Genera of Vascular Plants. Vol. 1. Springer-Verlag, Berlin.
Mabberley, D.J. 2008: Mabberley's plant book, a portable dictionary of plants, their classification and uses. Edition 3. Cambridge University Press.