T.E.R:R.A.I.N - Taranaki Educational Resource: Research, Analysis and Information Network


Blechnum chambersii (Nini) Lance Water Fern

Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Pteridophyta
Class: Pteridopsida
Order: Athyriales
Family: Blechnaceae
Genus: Blechnum (hard ferns)
Species: B. chambersii
Binomial name: Blechnum chambersii
Common names: Lance Water-fern, nini, rereti

Blechnum chambersii is a compact small slow growing ground fern usually found in deeply shaded banks especially along streams. It is a common fern found in damp areas of all New Zealand forests. It is also found in Australia and Fiji. It has a stout and erect rhizome that sometimes develops into a trunk. It has deep green lance shaped fronds (15 to 50 cm long and 4-6 cm wide) that are coarsely dissected and can have up to 15 to 40 alternate pinnae. It has sterile and fertile fronds which are usually shorter.
Early Maori use the young fronds in hangi cooking as a form of greens. 





Underside of frond


This is the end of spore bearing frond. The narrow leaves on this frond will develop spores in clusters of sporangia which are called sori along the underneath side of the leaves. The edge of the leaves rolls inwards to protect the developing sori.