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Connecticut Plants
Hayscented Fern
Dennstaedtia punctilobula (Michx.) T. Moore

Hayscented fern is very common, and it often grows in large colonies, forming a carpet. It can be identified by its lacy, light-green fronds. It can be confused with New York fern, but hayscented fern has triangular fronds, whereas New York fern fronds taper to tiny leaflets at the bottom.

  • Family: hayscented fern (Dennstaedtiaceae)
  • Habitat: woods and open woods
  • Height: fronds 12-18 inches long
  • Location of spores: underside of fronds (see third image below)
  • Petiole (leaf stalk): finely downy; groove very shallow or none
  • Growth pattern: random
  • Persistence: deciduous
  • Origin: native
Dennstaedtia punctilobula (Michx.) T. Moore
Dennstaedtia punctilobula (Michx.) T. Moore

Hayscented fern has light-green, lacy fronds.

Dennstaedtia punctilobula (Michx.) T. Moore

Underside of a frond, showing the very small, round sori (spore-bearing dots).