Subordinate Taxa
Scientific Name:
Niphidium J.Sm., Hist. Fil. 99 (1875)
Type Taxon:
Niphidium americanum (Hook.) J.Sm.

Epiphytic or terrestrial ferns.  Rhizomes short to long-creeping, scaly.  Rhizome scales clathrate, squarrose.  Fronds monomorphic, articulated to rhizome, undivided, coriaceous, virtually glabrous.  Veins reticulate; areoles with free included veinlets; hydathodes often present.  Sori round or slightly elongate, superficial, arranged in single rows of 5–12 between the main lateral veins, not confluent with age; paraphyses present as abortive sporangia; exindusiate.  Spores monolete, bilaterally symmetrical, smooth to slightly papillate.


A genus of 10 species (Lellinger 1972).


A neotropical genus occurring from Cuba and Mexico to Argentina and Uruguay. One species casual in New Zealand.

Number of species in New Zealand within Niphidium J.Sm.
Exotic: Casual1
Brownsey, P.J.; Perrie, L.R. 2015: Polypodiaceae (excluding Notogrammitis). In: Breitwieser, I; Heenan, P.B.; Wilton, A.D. (ed.) Flora of New Zealand — Ferns and Lycophytes. Fascicle 1. Manaaki Whenua Press, Lincoln.
Heenan, P.B.; de Lange, P.J.; Cameron, E.K.; Parris, B.S. 2008: Checklist of dicotyledons, gymnosperms, and pteridophytes naturalised or casual in New Zealand: additional records 2004–06. New Zealand Journal of Botany 46: 257–283.
Hennipman, E.; Veldhoen, P.; Kramer, K.U. 1990: Polypodiaceae. 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.
Lellinger, D.B. 1972: A revision of the fern genus Niphidium. American Fern Journal 62: 101–120.
Smith, J. 1875: Historia Filicum; an exposition of the nature, number, and organography of ferns. Macmillan, London.